Would a world parliament restrict national sovereignty?

National sovereignty understood as the right and capacity to exercise to self-determination is already restricted. In today’s global society many political questions necessarily need to be regulated transnationally. A world parliament would strengthen political autonomy and accountability as it would enable the peoples to directly participate in international decisions in a democratic way. According to the principle of subsidiarity only such questions should be regulated globally that can and must be effectively dealt with globally.

What rights of information, participation and oversight could be provided to a Parliamentary Assembly?

The rights of a Parliamentary Assembly could be extended incrementally as state parties decide is appropriate over time. For instance, it has been suggested the right (1) to put questions to the United Nations Secretary General and other senior multilateral officials, (2) to hold readings on draft resolutions including the right to suggest amendments, (3) to co-decide on the adoption of the regular budgets of the UN and its specialized agencies, (4) to participate in the election of the UN Secretary-General and other top officials, (5) to alert theUnited Nations Security Council on situations or (6) to submit legal questions to the International Court of Justice.

What are the powers a Parliamentary Assembly at the United Nations could be vested with?

A Parliamentary Assembly in principle could be vested with all rights and powers with which the United Nations General Assembly is equipped. In the case of an amendment of the UN Charter rights and powers could be enshrined that go beyond that. Initially an assembly could be equipped with a largely consultative role that would develop over time to include genuine rights of information, participation and oversight with a view of developing into a main organ that complements the UN General Assembly.

Would it be possible for a Parliamentary Assembly to interfere with national affairs?

A Parliamentary Assembly would be a part of the United Nations and bound by those provisions of the UN Charter that state that the United Nations is not authorized “to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state.” A Parliamentary Assembly thus would not be entitled to deliberate on issues which, according to established UN standards, would be qualified as an interference with the national sovereignty of member states.

What are the subjects a Parliamentary Assembly could deal with?

The range of political issues that a Parliamentary Assembly should be entitled to address should closely parallel those on the agenda of the United Nations General Assembly. According to Article 10 of the United Nations Charter, a Parliamentary Assembly then could “discuss any questions or any matters within the scope of the present Charter or relating to the powers and functions of any organs provided for in the present Charter.”