STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MINISTER COUNSELLOR OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA, MS. MERCEDES DE ARMAS GARCíA, AT THE INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS ON THE GLOBAL DIGITAL COMPACT ON THE THEME "DIGITAL TRUST AND SECURITY" (New York, 25 May 2023)
H.E. Ms. Anna Karin Eneström, Permanent Representative of Sweden, H.E. Mr. Claver Gatete, Permanent Representative of Rwanda, Excellencies and colleagues,
I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the G77 and China. At the outset, I would like to thank the co-facilitators for convening this thematic deep dive, which provides the opportunity to share our ideas and vision on this topic.
The Group emphasizes that the growing trend of misinformation and disinformation on online platforms, is exacerbating social discord, discrimination and hate speech. The Global Digital Compact (GDC) should highlight the global concerns about the rapid spread and proliferation of disinformation, the need for the dissemination of factual, timely, clear, accessible, multilingual and evidence-based information, and the need for all relevant stakeholders to address the challenge of misinformation and disinformation.
The Group notes the challenges faced by States in preventing and combating the use of information and communications technologies for criminal purposes, and emphasizes the need to continue international cooperation in this regard and to reinforce technical assistance and capacity-building activities, at their request, for the prevention, prosecution and punishment of such use in accordance with national and international law.
We note with appreciation the progress of the work of the Ad Hoc Committee to Elaborate a Comprehensive International Convention on Countering the Use of Information and Communications Technologies for Criminal Purposes, and encourage Member States to continue to engage in the work of the Ad Hoc Committee, and further encourages the participation of relevant stakeholders, in line with the road map and mode of work of the Ad Hoc Committee approved at its first session. The Group stresses that the security, safety and stability of Internet must be maintained, without jeopardizing efforts to achieve sustainable development. International cooperation through strengthening multilateralism in this area is highly important.
The Group reiterates that imposing unilateral coercive measures against developing countries undermines digital trust and international cooperation. The Global Digital Compact should recognize the detrimental effects of the unilateral coercive measures against developing countries to their ability to connect to the Internet, therefore impeding their peoples from the benefits and potentials that the Internet offers, and that it is important to avoid politicization of technical issues to foster an open, fair, inclusive, and non-discriminatory environment for the development of digital technologies in developing countries.
The Group underscores that no single country or stakeholder, or a small group thereof, should be allowed to monopolize or control the Internet core infrastructure. The United Nations has a crucial role to play in addressing this issue and advocating for fair and open digital environments that benefit all States, in particular developing countries. Finally, the Group underscores that the GDC should avoid duplicating the work of the Open-ended Working Group on security of and in the use of information and communications technologies.