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.