Recently, the United States and 60 other partner countries signed a political declaration called the “Declaration for the Future of the Internet”
Developing and promoting a single global internet regime in the face of growing digital authoritarianism has prompted to come out with a declaration like this one.
- To protect human rights,
- To promote the free flow of information,
- To protect the privacy of users,
- To keep the Internet open, free, reliable, secure, and neutral.
The above commitment, called the “Declaration for the Future of the Internet,” is the first such effort of its kind. The Declaration has been signed by around 60 nations, including the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Canada, and France. India, China, and Russia are among the large countries that have not yet sign on to this Declaration.
To fulfill the objective, all partners will reach out to the private sector, international organizations, the technical community, academia, civil society, and other key stakeholders globally. The Declaration and its underlying principles are not legally binding.
There has been a recent rise in the repression of Internet freedoms by some authoritarian governments. With the use of digital tools to violate human rights, the spread of illegal content and disinformation along with cyberattacks, the world is witnessing a global trend of rising digital authoritarianism.
Countries such as Russia and China have taken steps to suppress free expression, block independent news websites, meddle in elections, spread disinformation, and deny their citizens other human rights.
The number of nations that shut down the Internet in 2021 has increased from 29 in 2020 to 34 in 2021. In 2021, a total of 182 internet crackdowns were reported worldwide. After India, Myanmar is placed second for banning the Internet fifteen times in 2021, followed by Iran and Sudan, each of which has five such incidences.
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