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Since 1991 the Republic of Slovenia has had a parliamentary system composed of the Državni zbor (National Assembly) and the Državni svet (National Council). The Slovenian Parliament has the features of an 'incomplete bicameral system', based on 'asymmetric duality' – the National Council has less authority and fewer competences than the National Assembly, in accordance with Chapter IV of the Constitution. The National Assembly is described as the 'supreme representative and legislative institution ...

According to the Portuguese Constitution adopted in 1976, Portugal is a semi-presidential Republic and a parliamentary democracy. It is a unitary state which also includes two autonomous regions (the Azores and Madeira archipelagos) with their own political and administrative statutes and self-governing institutions (Article 6 of the Constitution). The Constitution of the Third Republic created a single representative body: the Assembly of the Republic (Assembleia da República). The Assembly exercises ...

The Federal Republic of Germany has a parliamentary system consisting of the Bundestag and the Bundesrat, established in 1949. The Bundestag is the main legislative body, which determines all laws at federal level. It does so with the participation of a ‘second chamber’, the Bundesrat, which represents the 16 constituent states (Bundesländer). Competencies are shared between the Federation and the Länder, with the Länder having the right to legislate insofar as the Grundgesetz (Basic Law) does not ...

Japan: Shinzō Abe wins a new mandate

At a Glance 25-10-2017

Shinzō Abe won the snap elections he called for the lower house on 22 October 2017. Despite her popularity, Tokyo's governor Yuriko Koike failed to convince the electorate to oust a prime minister in charge since December 2012. The newly created Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan became the main opposition force in the House of Representatives. In coalition with Kōmeitō, Abe's Liberal Democratic Party holds a two-thirds majority enabling it to pass constitutional amendments.

Serbia: Political parties and the EU

At a Glance 17-07-2015

Since the 1990s, one of the main dividing lines between Serbian political parties has been their position on European integration. The past two decades have seen growing dynamism to political life in Serbia, with new parties emerging and old ones changing from anti- to pro-EU views, nuancing their rhetoric in line with public attitudes. The start of accession talks with the EU in January 2014 indicates the attenuation of previously sharp divisions vis-à-vis the EU.

In the post-Cold War international system, new actors, including parliaments, emerge and they challenge the traditional dominance by governments of international relations and foreign policy. In democratic societies it is increasingly difficult to sustain the traditional notion that foreign policy is incompatible with democratic decision-making and scrutiny and that state sovereignty in this domain is the exclusive, unquestionable competence of governments, as the perceived sole representative of ...

In December 2014, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called early national elections, scheduled for 17 March 2015, after dissolving the coalition arrangement underpinning the government formed after the January 2013 elections. Differences on Palestinian issues and budgetary matters, between Netanyahu, of the right-wing Likud party, and centrist parties in his coalition, reportedly contributed to the decision. Israel's positions on a host of regional security and socioeconomic issues could be influenced ...

With 1 267 million inhabitants, of which 834 million can vote, India is the largest democracy in the world. India is an authentic multicultural country: in Lok Sabha, the lower house, members can speak in 15 different languages!

The 2014 Constitutions of Egypt and Tunisia, though enacted at the same time and as a consequence of very similar revolutionary forces, are different in style and content. Egypt has fallen back to the structures of the 1971 Constitution and will likely experience further restoration of the authoritarian presidentialism. The Armed Forces continue to play a dominant background role in the political and constitutional life of the country. Tunisia seems to have embraced a new constitutional paradigm ...