Our source in New York has also confirmed that unless there are any last-minute interventions by Member States, the Second Committee is expected to adopt the final text on November 30. Although anything is possible, further amendments to the text are ‘highly unlikely’.
Consultations have been taking place on the margins of the General Assembly since November 4, after Yemen – on behalf of the Group of 77 and China – presented a draft resolution entitled ‘Information and communications technology for development’.
Once the Second Committee adopts the text, it will then forward its draft text for consideration in the plenary of the General Assembly. The plenary is expected to adopt the resolution without a vote ‘as soon as next week, possibly the week after’ our source confirmed. (Read earlier article on process and background)
Revisions to the text
The current version amends many paragraphs of the draft, but confirms an important provision:
“Decides to extend the mandate of the Internet Governance Forum for a further five years, and in this regard, invites the Secretary-General to continue with the convening of the Internet Governance Forum for a multi-stakeholder policy dialogue on Internet governance issues according to its mandate as set out in paragraph 72 of the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society,12 while recognizing at the same time the need to improve it with a view to linking it to the broader dialogue on global internet governance” (paragraph 15).
Our source commented that prescriptive language on the improvements of the IGF has been avoided. While a reference has been added to the preamble, paragraph 17 has been deleted.
Any references to substitute the Secretariat to a Bureau, as had been originally proposed in the draft resolution, have also been removed (paragraph 19).
The final version also confirmed the very clear distinction between the IGF and enhanced co-operation that are to be pursued by the Secretary-General of the United Nations through two distinct processes.
As for the reference to Critical Internet Resources as ‘public resources that belong to all mankind’, with countries being ‘equally entitled to the management and utilisation of those resources’ (paragraph 23), this has been removed too.
Do you agree with the amendments? Should there be further interventions on the final text? Tell us what you think.