US stymies UN net body

The United States is determined to prevent the creation of a new UN body to control the internet and will fight for freedom of expression to be highlighted this month at the first-ever world summit on information technology.

According to the State Department's coordinator for international communications and information policy, David Gross, Washington would not support an African-backed proposal for a UN "digital solidarity fund" to finance internet infrastructure projects in the developing world.

Mr Gross, who will lead the US delegation to the December 10-12 World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in Geneva, said he was confident that US views would be heard, even if it had to be done through a separate statement.

But he allowed that getting them into the summit's final declaration might be difficult given the ongoing intense debate ahead of the meeting that has led negotiators to schedule two last-minute sessions on Friday and Saturday in a bid to reach consensus.

"We're prepared to make sure that our views are clear through a separate statement or otherwise," Mr Gross told reporters before leaving for Geneva to attend the negotiations.

News source: News Interactive - US stymies UN net body

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