Internet Governance has been an issue of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly since the end of the 1990s. In the year 2000, the UN General Assembly resolved the convocation of the UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). After the WSIS II summit in Tunis (2005) and ever since, it has overseen the implementation of the WSIS resolutions (WSIS+10 in the year 2015 and WSIS+20 in the year 2025). Three committees of the UN General Assembly discuss Internet Governance issues on a regular basis. All of them adopt annual resolutions, in which the UN member states take positions on Internet Governance issues. For instance, they strongly supported the need of applying international law and human both offline and online.
- The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) discusses issues of cyber security. It supervises the “UN Group of Governmental Experts (UNGGE)”. [The First Committee is currently conducting a controversial debate of Russia’s proposal to prepare a cyber security convention.]
- The Second Committee (Economic and Financial Committee) investigates the role of the Internet in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 as defined by the UN. It supervises the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (UNCSTD), which serves as a supervisory body for reviewing the implementation of the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society in Tunis (2005).
- The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee) supervises the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC). In this role, its tasks include dealing with the reports of the UNHCR Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression (David Kay) and of the Special Rapporteur on online privacy (Josef Canatacci).
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