VALLETTA, Malta, 6th July, 2018 (WAM) — In a global manifestation and a large international media presence, the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace (GCTP) held the first procedural session of the International Parliament for Tolerance and Peace (IPTP) in the main hall of the Maltese Parliament in Valletta today, at the invitation of the Speaker of the House of Representatives of Malta, An?lu Farrugia, and the President of the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace, Ahmed bin Mohammed Al-Jarwan, and the presence of a 54 heads and representatives of regional and national parliaments from around the world.
Albania assumed the presidency of the International Parliament according to the alphabetical order of member states and Taulant Balla was appointed President for one year. In addition, five Executive Committees were established, legal and legislative affairs, international relations, youth and women, peace instilling and sustainable development.
Farrugia opened the session by welcoming participants to Valletta, the European Capital of Culture 2018, stressing Malta’s absolute support for the International Parliament, which will make a fundamental contribution to instilling moderation and openness in the face of racism, discrimination, extremism and intolerance.
Al-Jarwan stressed on what is threatening humanity: “Today, humanity is under threat of religious extremism, racial intolerance and intellectual violence, because the values of tolerance and acceptance of the other spread by the major heavenly religions have deteriorated, leading to a disturbance in world peace and security. In the face of all these challenges, a new way of dealing with them had to be found, this is where the idea of creating a new international body that promoted a culture of tolerance and acceptance of the other came from.
“The participation of this number of members of national, regional and international parliaments demonstrates our agreement and our collective recognition of our common need for this kind of inter-parliamentary cooperation in leading a new global culture and channeling public energies towards tolerance and peace, being aware that the enemies of peace – the outlaws – are now a threat to the stability of our societies thus our cooperation mechanisms has become indispensable,” he added. “We will do everything in our power to establish an international parliament that will be motivated only by the will and enthusiasm of its members to serve the cause of tolerance and peace, an international parliament that respects the principles of international democratic relations and is fully committed to the rules and principles of international law. An international parliament that respects the principles of national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of any State.”
Al-Jarwan concluded: “With this meeting, we write history for a more peaceful and tolerant future.”
“On behalf of the delegation of African parliamentarians accompanying me, composed of 15 parliamentarians from all over Africa, at this extraordinary event we encourage this global initiative and congratulate the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace on the various peace efforts it is making in the world,” said Speaker of the Pan-African Parliament Roger Nkodo Dang.
“Peace is priceless, and we must do everything in our power to preserve it, where peace is being attacked, find solutions and let us all be the messengers of peace by supporting this blessed initiative,” he added.
“It is a great honor to participate in this extraordinary special event, the launching of the International Parliament for Tolerance and Peace by the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace, which deserves our full support as it contributes to the promotion and promotion of peace and tolerance in the world,” said Elias Castillo, President of the Latin American Parliament.
“Our regions have experienced many conflicts because of the political differences that threaten their stability. Wars and conflicts have negative consequences for women, children and men and on the human as a whole. As long as parliaments have their primary role in sharing common visions, we are very pleased with the existence of this International Parliament for Tolerance And peace, having the capacity of achieving a great vision together and successful projects with a view to spreading tolerance and peace, and this should be the beginning of a promising future for the defense of humanity. “
Carmelo Abela, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion, expressed his great pleasure to have joined the inaugural session of the international parliament for tolerance and peace, and said: “We are gathered here, national parliamentary representatives, hailing from different regions of the world to demonstrate the importance we give to fostering tolerance and peace. We can’t have peace if there is no tolerance. The quality of accepting other people’s rights to their own opinions, believes, or actions.”
“As host of the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace, Malta is eager and determined to continue playing its part towards taking forward and implementing those shared objectives, that serve the purpose of building international partnerships, instilling values of tolerance and culture, rejecting extremism, and supporting regional and international youth initiatives,” he added.
Abela stressed on the importance of the launching of this International Parliament at such times where the international community is faced with an ever increasing number of crises and conflicts igniting and burning around the world and directly challenging our societies, and ended his speech by saying: “We can only address global challenges through cooperation, and your presence is evidence of our commitment to a culture of awareness, acceptance of others, dialogue, moderation and peace.”
Al-Jarwan and Farrugia held a joint press conference, in which the Speaker of the Maltese Parliament described the launching of the International Parliament by a historic initiative in terms of the participation of all these countries, which confirms the international interest in cooperation to put an end to terrorism, violence, extremism, racism, hatred and rejection of the other.
Al-Jarwan also answered media questions and stressed the importance of the role of the media in spreading the culture of tolerance and peace.
The main objective of the establishment of an international parliament among the organs of the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace is that membership in this international parliament composed of members of parliamentarians from national parliaments will provide unique opportunities for assorting the cooperation and exchange of ideas and experiences to reach common convictions on many national and international issues facing international peace, such as terrorism, extremism, violence, religious, ethnic, sectarian and racial strife. Hence the importance of developing international cooperation between parliaments of different countries because their role is no longer limited to delivering the voice of their constituencies on a national level only, but they are called upon to deliver the voices of their people at the international level and to make them heard by the whole world, with emphasis on respect for the national sovereignty and the privacy and independence of each country.