EU To Defend Access To Open Internet And Freedom Of Speech at Azerbaijan Conference
The European Commission will use the opportunity of the annual global conference of the Internet Governance Forum in Baku November 5-9 to defend the open Internet and promote the Internet as a frontline in efforts to ensure freedom of speech globally, including in Azerbaijan.
These efforts will advance the Commission’s No Disconnect Strategy and its support for multi-stakeholder governance of the Internet, the Commission said.
Vice President Kroes will lead a delegation from across the Commission and make a strong intervention into debates about the future of Internet governance at the conference. According to the Commission, Kroes will defend the view that there is no need for a new Treaty to regulate the Internet. Instead, the multi-stakeholder model should be promoted further and be made more inclusive and responsive.
More generally the Commission will emphasise the need for the Internet to remain a vibrant environment for innovation and economic growth, and to improve as a space where transparency, democracy and protection of human rights are guaranteed.
In addition to the conference, the Commission will meet with human rights activists and on-line journalists, as well as meeting the President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev. In this respect, it is hoped the delegation will learn first-hand about experiences of internet freedom both in Azerbaijan and globally, and will raise a number of concerns about protection and promotion of human rights in Azerbaijan.