24 Jun 2015

International parliament group to tackle Nauru

8:45 am on 24 June 2015

An organisation representing parliaments around the world, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, says it plans to look carefully into the situation in Nauru's parliament.

Crowds gather in Nauru

Crowds gather in Nauru Photo: supplied/ Shane Bazzi

Five opposition MPs remain suspended from Nauru's 19-member legislature after the government accused them of spreading lies in the foreign media, leaving just two opposition MPs in the House.

The IPU's Secretary-General, Martin Chungong, says a strong and effective opposition is an important part of democracy and he says the union will be offering its services to Nauru in a neutral and impartial manner.

He says the IPU offers mediation services to help parliaments become more inclusive and tolerant towards the opposition.

"We are going to look at it and we are saying that democracy is under seige everywhere in the world. This is an instance where one of the key tenets of democracy is in jeapardy and so we have to look into that."

Mr Chungong says parliaments around the world have a collective responsibility to help each other as political instability in one country can have disastrous effects on others.

Mr Chungong is visiting New Zealand as part of a programme to enhance connections between the parliaments of the Pacific and the IPU.

He says several New Zealand MPs and the Speaker of New Zealand's parliament have alerted him to the situation in Nauru which is not yet an IPU member.