Action by national lawmakers may determine whether countries meet global calls to sharply reduce maternal deaths, halt the spread of HIV, halve extreme poverty and provide universal access to reproductive health care by 2015.
BANGKOK, Thailand — On 21-22 November, 180 legislators and ministers from 103 countries will hold a dialogue in Bangkok on strategies for achieving the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and those agreed at the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD).
The Third International Parliamentarians’ Conference on the Implementation of the ICPD Programme of Action (IPCI/ICPD) is being organized by the Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development (AFPPD) and UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, with the involvement of African, Arab, inter-European and inter-American regional parliamentary groups and Parliamentarians for Global Action, a global organization with a focus on population. The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Thai National Assembly are the local co-hosts.
Adequate funding, effective policies and laws, and political commitment are all critical to success. Parliamentarians from developed and developing countries were recently asked to assess progress and obstacles in these areas; this global survey will provide the basis for discussions.
HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will open the meeting. Keynote speakers are UNFPA Executive Director Thoraya Obaid, ESCAP Executive Secretary Kim Hak-su, and International Planned Parenthood Federation Director-General Gill Greer. AFPPD Chairman Yasuo Fukuda will preside. Participants available for interview will include government ministers and distinguished members of parliaments from every region.
A press conference, with Ms. Obaid, Mr. Fukuda and AFPPD Secretary-General Dr. Malinee Sukavejworakit, will be held on 22 November at 13:00 hrs at UNCC.
“Parliamentarians are key advocates for people’s rights and needs,” said Ms. Obaid. “This conference will take stock of progress made and help them to mobilize action and resources for countries to achieve international development goals to reduce poverty, improve maternal and reproductive health, combat HIV/AIDS and advance gender equality.”
William A. Ryan
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