How relevant is the Commonwealth? | The Stream

12

This month the United Kingdom will host a gathering of some 53 heads of government representing about a third of the world’s population, all of them members of the Commonwealth of Nations. But what exactly is the Commonwealth and does being a member really matter?

The Commonwealth was formed in 1949, in part, as a way to give former British colonies the ability to establish their own government. Over the years itโ€™s grown to include nations with no ties to the United Kingdom. However to join, a nation must have a historical constitutional association with another Commonwealth country. Joining nations must also agree to the broad principles of the Commonwealth – development, democracy, human rights and peace.

Some so-called Brexiters, those in favour of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union, believe the Commonwealth could take the place of the EU. Thatโ€™s an idea journalist Ishaan Tharoor disagrees with. Tharoor, a foreign affairs correspondent for The Washington Post, believes itโ€™s far-fetched to assume that the Commonwealth will take the place of other global partnerships.

So does the Commonwealth have a purpose? We’ll discuss that on this episode of The Stream.

Guests:

Ishaan Tharoor @ishaantharoor
Foreign Affairs Reporter, The Washington Post
washingtonpost.com/people/ishaan-tharoor

Hon. Patricia Scotland @PScotlandCSG
Commonwealth Secretary-General
thecommonwealth.org/secretary-general

Ibtisam Ahmed @Ibzor
Doctoral Researcher, University of Nottingham
nottingham.ac.uk/Politics/people/ibtisam.ahmed

Timothy M. Shaw
Former Director, Institute of Commonwealth Studies
umb.edu/faculty_staff/list/tim_shaw

Join the conversation:
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/AJStream
FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/AJStream
GOOGLE+: http://google.com/+TheStream
Subscribe to our channel http://bit.ly/AJSubscribe

Source Video URL

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here