International relations

National flags

(© EP)

Traditionally, the Federal Republic of Germany’s foreign policy has been the responsibility of the Federal Government. This foreign policy is flanked at the parliamentary level by the Members of the German Bundestag. Apart from the scrutiny they exercise over the actions of the Federal Government, the classic fields of “parliamentary foreign policy” include the Bundestag’s rights to participate in the conclusion of treaties under international law, legislative acts of the European Union and Bundeswehr deployments outside Germany. At the same time, there is also an increasing need to engage in dialogue and cultivate contacts between parliaments and with international organisations in order to promote democracy, human rights, peace, stability and the dialogue of cultures. National parliaments play an important role as multipliers in civil society, raising awareness of these issues.