13 November 2014

US State Department on ITU Plenipotentiary 2014: "We Won!"

Morning Tech - POLITICO.com: (11 Nov 2014) "U.S. ITU DELEGATION CROWS ABOUT INTERNET GOVERNANCE SUCCESS. The U.S. delegation is claiming credit for keeping major cybersecurity and Internet governance issues off the table at the ITU's recently-closed plenipotentiary in South Korea...."

The U.S. delegation to Busan was led by Ambassador Daniel Sepulveda and consisted of nearly 130 government, private sector, and civil society representatives. Below are excerpts from the US State Department's Press Release:

"The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Plenipotentiary Conference, which concluded on November 7, is a three week, high-level policy conference held every four years. Ambassador Daniel Sepulveda, U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy, led the U.S. delegation to a successful outcome that will greatly support the development of global telecommunications infrastructure and networks. The Plenipotentiary Conference sets the ITU general policies, adopts four-year strategic and financial plans, and elects the ITU senior management team, members of Council, and members of the Radio Regulations Board for the next four years.

"The U.S. delegation achieved its four primary objectives, and all outcomes were agreed by consensus with other member states. The U.S. delegation was elected to another four year term on the ITU Council with more votes than we received four years ago, and Ms. Joanne Wilson was elected to the Radio Regulations Board (RRB). Member states improved the ITU’s fiscal and strategic management and transparency policies and improved the ability of all stakeholders to view and participate in the work of the Union. The member states agreed to no changes to the ITU’s legal instruments (the Constitution and Convention of the Union). Finally, member states decided not to expand the ITU’s role in Internet governance or cybersecurity issues, accepting that many of those issues are outside of the mandate of the ITU. The leadership of the U.S. delegation was instrumental to each of these efforts.
Internet and Cybersecurity Issues
"The United States built a broad consensus that led to success on Internet and cybersecurity issues keeping the ITU’s work focused on its current mandate. The United States worked with other members to mitigate and remove proposed language from resolutions that would have improperly expanded the scope of ITU work and curtail the robust, innovative, multi-stakeholder Internet we enjoy today, while providing clear guidance to the ITU on the efforts it can and should work on.

"The U.S. also worked successfully with partners to eliminate proposed language that could have provided a mandate for the ITU in surveillance or privacy issues; inhibited the free flow of data; regulated Internet content and service companies; undermined the multi-stakeholder process; or called on the ITU to develop international regulations on these issues.

"Finally, a compromise was reached on the Council Working Group on International Internet-related Public Policy (CWG-Internet), which will provide for physical consultation meetings, open to all stakeholders, to be held prior to each of the CWG-Internet meetings. These meetings will allow all Internet stakeholders to directly contribute to the work of the CWG-Internet....." (emphasis added, read more at the link above)

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