SCO participation at the 4th Central Asian Internet Governance Forum: Internet for Increasing Capacities in Central Asia

SCO participation at the 4th Central Asian Internet Governance Forum: Internet for Increasing Capacities in Central Asia

The 4th Central Asian Internet Governance Forum was held on 15-16 May in Tashkent with support of the OSCE. Over 200 representatives from Central Asian governments, NGOs, international and business organisations as well as experts and journalists were invited to the event.

SCO Secretariat Adviser Vladimir Zakharov addressed the participants with welcoming remarks at the request and on behalf of the SCO Secretary-General. He spoke on the SCO efforts to provide cybersecurity in Eurasia, above all in combating dissemination of terrorist, separatist and extremist ideas via online networks, and in preventing the use of information and communications technologies for intervention in the internal affairs of other countries.

"SCO countries are working hand in glove with the UN in the development of universal international norms, rules and principles concerning responsible behaviour of states in the information space. Specifically, in 2015 China distributed an updated version of the Rules of Conduct in the Field of International Information Security on behalf of the SCO member states as an official UN document.

The UN General Assembly resolution Developments in the Field of Information and Telecommunications in the Context of International Security was adopted on Russia's initiative and with support of all the SCO member states in December 2018.

The SCO is calling on the world community to create a peaceful, safe and open information space based on the principles of cooperation, respect of national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. We are prepared to step up interaction on the internet with equal rights for all countries, primarily in ensuring sovereign rights to govern the Internet within their national segments.

SCO member states are consistently advocating the earliest adoption of a UN Comprehensive Concept of Combating International Terrorism and Establishing Broad Cooperation in Countering Challenges and Threats to Regional Security," Zakharov said.

The SCO Secretary-General also pointed out a substantial role that the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure in Tashkent is playing in the struggle against cyberterrorism. He said that the SCO is concerned with the protection of young people from the evil influence of international terrorism, extremism and drug trafficking. He emphasised the importance of drafting and adopting under the auspices of the UN an international document on actions against the use of information and communications technologies for crime.

Those at the forum paid great attention to the Secretary-General's address bursting several times into enthusiastic rounds of applause.