HE Speaker of the Shura Council Hassan bin Abdullah Al Ghanim affirmed that the State of Qatar pays special attention to the Arab and Islamic systems concerned with the issues and concerns of its people, and their participation in decision-making and advancing development.
In a speech delivered on his behalf by HE Deputy Speaker of the Shura Council Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti during the opening session of the 10th Annual Conference of Association of Secretaries-General of Arab Parliaments, which kicked off in Doha today under the theme "Digital Democracy and Social Communication and the Role of Parliaments in Strengthening them," His Excellency stressed the importance of the conference, given that the association is an effective parliamentary system that provides one of the important forums that it holds every year with the aim of developing and supporting administrative performance in Secretariats-General and assisting Arab parliaments and legislative councils in performing their legislative and oversight tasks and in the field of parliamentary diplomacy.
His Excellency noted the Shura Councils keenness to provide all support and assistance to the association in order to achieve its goals and perform the responsibilities entrusted to it efficiently and competently, pointing out that the Secretariats-General are the lifeblood of parliaments and popular participation, and that the association represents an advisory center and repository of parliamentary expertise.
In this regard, he praised the efforts of the Secretariat-General in overcoming the tasks of Arab parliaments and legislative councils and assisting them in implementing their legislative and administrative plans and programs.
HE Hassan bin Abdullah Al Ghanim said that the State of Qatar always looks forward to hosting such meetings that bring together Arab brothers, wishing the conference success for the good of the Arab peoples and countries, and appreciating the important and pivotal role played by the Secretariat-General in the field of parliamentary work due to the administrative, technical and advisory services it provides, in addition to all types of support that contribute to facilitating parliaments carrying out their role, carrying out their responsibilities and exercising their powers.
He explained that enhancing cooperation, exchanging experiences, and reviewing best practices between Secretariats-General in parliaments would develop the performance of Secretariats-General and improve the quality of their services, which would be reflected in the performance of parliamentary councils, praising the results of the previous periodic meetings of the Secretaries-General thanks to their solidarity and efforts, as they analyzed and studied in depth many important topics that would enhance the role of Secretariats-General in activating and developing the performance of Arab parliaments and legislative councils, where they expressed their aspiration to continue these achievements and projects and have them approved during the current Doha Conference.
In his speech, HE Speaker of the Shura Council drew attention to the tensions and instability that the Arab world is witnessing in some parts of it, particularly the worsening situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, due to the racist and aggressive practices of the occupying entity and its extremist government, which is escalating its repressive measures against the Palestinian people, and working to destabilize the countries of the entire region.
He pointed out in a related context that the occupied territories are witnessing extremely delicate and dangerous situations with the growth of hate speech and the escalation of repeated violations of the Al-Aqsa Mosque courtyard and storming cities and arresting Palestinian youth under the pretext of resisting the occupation, which led to the martyrdom of more than two hundred Palestinians during this year, including women and children.
HE Hassan bin Abdullah Al Ghanim noted that the Arab region has been suffering for more than seven decades as a result of the aggression and occupation of Arab lands, stressing that all of this makes cooperation and solidarity an urgent necessity at all levels.
He added that as parliamentarians representing the Arab peoples, they should call for the need for the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the various national and international parliamentary organizations to adopt a serious and firm stance against the repeated brutal attacks committed by the Israeli authorities against the brotherly Palestinian people and that the international community and the United Nations have to work to stop these attacks.
At the beginning of his speech after welcoming the participants, HE Speaker of the Shura Council extended his deepest condolences and sympathy to the sisterly Kingdom of Morocco and the sisterly state of Libya, the government and people, for the victims of the devastating earthquake that Morocco was exposed to, and for the victims of the floods that swept northeastern Libya, wishing a speedy recovery for the injured, and safety for the two brotherly countries and their people.
For his part, in his remarks during the opening session of the 10th conference of the Association of Secretaries-General of Arab Parliaments, HE Shura Council Secretary General, President of the Association of Secretaries-General of Arab Parliaments Dr. Ahmed bin Nasser Al Fadala stressed the great interest that the State of Qatar, under the leadership of HH the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, attaches to the efforts, activities, and achievements of the Association of Secretaries-General of Arab Parliaments through its interaction with the latest regional and international issues.
His Excellency pointed out that the conference will discuss the topics on its agenda and exchange opinions on the most successful and easiest ways to achieve the association's goals, in a way that serves Arab parliaments and legislative councils and contributes to serving the Arab peoples and realizing their hopes and aspirations.
His Excellency added that the conference will also address the completion of the discussion and study of important issues, including studying the powers of the secretaries-general and issuing a guideline for that, as well as following up on the decisions issued by the Baghdad conference in February by forming two committees, the first concerned with studying the statute and bylaws of the proposed assembly that were approved, provided that it will be approved at the Doha meeting, while the second committee is concerned with issuing the guidelines. The conference will also approve the association's draft annual financial budget, as is the case in previous conferences, approve its final account, determine the date and location of the association's next meeting, and consider membership applications submitted to join it.
His Excellency said that what reinforces the certainty of the association's growing role in serving Arab parliaments is its effective response and keeping pace with developments and the aspirations of Arab parliaments, as this was reflected in its interest in reviewing its bylaws, working to develop the competencies of secretaries-general, and highlighting their vital role in the performance of parliaments.
His Excellency noted that the growing role of the association was evident in its obtaining the status of an observer member in the Arab Parliament and the Parliamentary Union of OIC Member States (PUIC) and that it is still moving forward at the same time in completing the procedures for its membership as an observer in the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). He added that the periodic meetings of the association have been held regularly over the past two years, accompanied by an increase in the volume of participation and an increase in interaction with all regional and international parliamentary activities.
His Excellency said that the association, with the efforts and support of everyone, was able during the past two years to discuss and study the most important structural, methodological, and guiding issues that enhance its effectiveness, which contributes to establishing institutional frameworks for its work, making it an enlightening and advisory center for Arab parliaments, especially since it has now contained distinguished experiences and practices that are exchanged in such platform.
HE President of the Association of Secretaries-General of Arab Parliaments said that since its establishment in 1995 and through its successive conferences until today, the association has become accustomed to choosing one topic on which to base collective opinions and to study and discuss it to results that members agree on and work to implement them. He added that as the growing pivotal role of the association is applauded in supporting the member states supervisory and legislative councils to achieve the aspirations of their peoples, the association looks forward to making more efforts and contributions to its various activities.