Northern Ireland Assembly Flax Flower Logo

Northern Ireland

4 February 2010 




The Northern Ireland Assembly is to host 80 international Parliamentarians as part of the International Parliamentary Conference on Peacebuilding: Tackling State Fragility.

The conference, organised in partnership with the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, begins in London on 31 January and moves to Belfast on 4 February. It seeks to highlight the role of parliaments in peace building efforts and bring together delegates from across the world, to exchange knowledge and experience.

Commenting on the Conference, The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Mr William Hay, MLA said:

“We are delighted to welcome delegates of this International Parliamentary Conference to Northern Ireland.
“Since restoration in 2007 the Northern Ireland Assembly has supported a range of initiatives aimed at sharing our experiences in conflict resolution with politicians and policy makers from other countries.
“ Northern Ireland’s experience shows the importance of robust parliamentary structures and mechanisms which strengthen democracy and engage the people in creating a better future for all. This conference will give delegates the opportunity to examine and discuss many of the lessons learnt in Northern Ireland. There will be participation and input by parliamentarians, the media and members of civil society, all of whom will be able to contribute their experiences and views of the journey that our community has travelled, as well as the opportunities and challenges that still remain.”

A cross-party panel of MLAs will share their individual and party experiences of the Northern Ireland peace process and the ongoing work to build public confidence in the political system.

As part of the Conference, the delegates will visit local integrated schools and community groups in Belfast to see the work being done on the ground to strengthen community relations.

Notes to Editors:

International Parliamentary Conference on Peacebuilding: Tackling State Fragility is organised by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK Branch in partnership with the Northern Ireland Assembly and will be held at the Houses of Parliament, London (Monday 1 - Wednesday 3 February) and at the Northern Ireland Assembly, Belfast (Wednesday 3 - Friday 5 February).

Interview and photo opportunities:

Media access is permitted to plenary sessions on Thursday 4 February 10.00-13.00 and Friday 5 February 15.00-16.15 , and to the Reception in the Great Hall at 17.30 on Thursday 4 February. Media are asked to confirm attendance by contacting the Communications team at the numbers below .

About CPA:

CPA UK is one of over 175 branches of the CPA – the professional association of all Commonwealth parliamentarians.

CPA UK’s membership is made up of Members from both Houses of the United Kingdom Parliament who work to strengthen parliamentary democracy. CPA UK conducts international parliamentary outreach on behalf of Parliament and the wider CPA by parliamentary diplomacy and parliamentary strengthening activities to contribute to the capacity of partner parliaments.

For further information, or to arrange an interview or photo opportunity, please contact:

Jennifer Pleavin
Communications Officer
Northern Ireland Assembly
Phone: 028 9052 1606
Mobile: 07502 379339

Sinead Murphy
Deputy Communications Officer
Northern Ireland Assembly
Phone: 028 9052 5938