Arab proposal prompts ‘impasse’ at UN net regulation talks

By Christopher Williams, Technology Correspondent
The Telegraph – UK

The United States has talked on an “impasse” and threatened to walk out of the World Conference on International Telecommunications. The meeting, in Dubai, is not due to finish until Friday.


The threat came after the United Arab Emirates tabled proposals to extend the international treaty at the centre of the negotiations to internet. It currently deals mostly with traditional telecoms infrastructure by setting international standards.

The coalition of nations behind the 22-page proposal, which also includes Russia, Saudi Arabia, Algeria and Sudan, wants the updated treaty to explicitly give “governments, the private sector and civil society” a role in internet regulation.

It would also give all 193 countries attending the meeting an equal role overseeing the Domain Name System, which ensures web addresses function properly. It is currently administered by ICANN, a body under contract to the US government.

The US and its allies objected to the introduction of complex new material midway through the conference.

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