One world, one parliament: "General Assembly" in Berlin wants to give a voice to the underrepresented

6. november 2017

Model world parliament met from 3rd to 5th November at Schaubühne theatre in Berlin, bringing together approximately 60 delegates / Art project wants to fill "gap"

"Despite worldwide economic and political implications, there are neither effective legal institutions nor sufficient democratic structures on a global level to adequately regulate the world market, prosecute violations of international law, enforce human rights or direct ecological developments into the right channels," explained Swiss stage director Milo Rau last Friday in Berlin at the opening of the "General Assembly" that was organized by him and his team. 

Milo Rau at the opening session of the "General Assembly"

The conference had been announced as the "first world parliament in human history" and, according to Milo Rau, is supposed to fill a "global gap" by making the voices of those heard who are affected by political decisions but are not included in the  decision-making process.

The General Assembly's purpose is to give "a voice to those who are underrepresented, who are not heard, the global Third Estate: labor immigrants, children and future generations, war victims, textile workers, miners, farmers, economic and climate refugees, the victims of the dawning ecocide, the oceans, the atmosphere, animals and plants."

In his opening speech, Rau referred to the French Revolution and the Constitution of the National Assembly by the Third Estate in 1789.

A Charter for the 21st century

In front of the crowded auditorium of the Schaubühne in Berlin around 60 delegates met for two and a half days to exchange views on "where we stand as a global community and what actions to take - from a social, ecological, technological and political perspective." 

In the course of five plenary sessions, the implementation of human rights, military interventions, the regulation of the global economy, migration and border regimes as well as cultural and natural common goods were discussed.

Finally, a "Storming of the Reichstag" and the presentation of a "Charter for the 21st century" is planned to take place on 7th November. The demands stipulated in the Charter are addressed in particular to the new German Bundestag that was elected in September. 

In a speech at the opening session, Andreas Bummel, the representative of the international campaign for a UN Parliamentary Assembly, demanded the creation of a "world parliament, democratically elected by all world citizens", equipped with the competence "to make binding decisions on issues that affect humanity as a whole."

The "General Assembly" was organized by the International Institute of Political Murder (IIPM) in cooperation with the "Schaubühne" at Lehniner Platz in Berlin. The project was sponsored by the German Federal Cultural Foundation, the city of Berlin and the German Federal Center for Political Education. 

The European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR), Medico International, the foundation "Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung" as well as "Brot für die Welt" were listed as the most important civil society supporters. The large number of supporters also includes Democracy Without Borders, the host organization of the UNPA campaign. 

The conference was broadcasted live in five theatres in Paris, Ghent, Brussels, Hamburg and Munich. Numerous reports were published in the German-speaking media, such as Deutschlandfunk, Berliner Zeitung, Luzerner Zeitung, SWR2 as well as Spiegel-Online.

Images: Schaubühne

More information

Website of the General Assembly

Tags: Germany