The IPU Executive Committee met in Geneva on 19th and 20th February 2003. At the end of its deliberations, the President of the IPU Council, Chilean Senator Sergio Páez, made the following declaration :
"The Inter-Parliamentary Union has a privileged role to defend peace by promoting democracy"
"Throughout its long history, the Inter-Parliamentary Union has striven to promote dialogue in the interests of international peace and security. It is therefore deeply concerned by the latest developments in the current international crisis relating to Iraq.
The Organisation firmly believes that all of the existing institutional mechanisms that can lead to a peaceful resolution of the crisis should be employed to the full to that end.
It maintains that the forum for resolving the issue relating to Iraq is the United Nations Security Council and that all action taken against that country should have the express authorisation of that body.
The Inter-Parliamentary Union calls upon the Parliament and Government of Iraq to cooperate fully with the United Nations Security Council and to comply immediately with the terms of Security Council Resolution 1441. There can be no doubt that a war would bring untold suffering not only to the people of Iraq but to the entire region. Such an outcome would trigger a humanitarian crisis of huge proportions that would cause particular suffering to women and children.
The Inter-Parliamentary Union has a privileged role to defend peace by promoting democracy through parliaments in all countries, and declares that it is fully prepared to continue to pursue this goal with respect to Iraq".