Washington, April 28, 2022 (AFP) – The United States on Thursday joined more than 50 countries in launching an initiative to protect a safe and free internet, in the face of the rise of authoritarian governments, such as Russia, that restrict internet access. digital information.
The so-called Declaration on the Future of the Internet (DFI) seeks to restore the “enormous promise” of the Internet, rejecting “the rise of digital authoritarianism” to ensure that democracy is strengthened, privacy is protected, and a free global economy is fostered, the White House said.
The statement added that this goal is threatened by a greater number of governments that suppress freedom of expression and access to news, spread false information or suppress the Internet.
In recent months, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Moscow has been “vigorously promoting disinformation at home and abroad, censoring online news sources, blocking or shutting down legitimate websites, and even attacking Ukraine’s Internet infrastructure.” to reporters.
“Russia is not alone,” added the source, who also cited China.
More than 55 countries have joined the initiative, including developed countries such as Germany, Australia, Canada, France, Japan and the United Kingdom, along with developing countries such as Argentina, Cyprus, Slovenia, Kenya and Montenegro, as well as Ukraine.
Another source in the Biden administration said that while the declaration is not legally binding, it sets out “fundamental principles” and “calls on governments to commit to promoting an open, free, global, interoperable, reliable and secure Internet for the world.”
These efforts are aimed at combating Internet fragmentation, but will “respect the regulatory independence” of each country, the official said.
The declaration also refers to the need to ensure equitable access to disadvantaged groups.
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