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The Netherlands joins US, Canada in UN telecom treaty protest

Thursday 10 January 2013

The Netherlands will refuse to ratify a new United Nations treaty on telecommunications because it 'stands in the way of a free and open internet', economic affairs minister Henk Kamp has told parliament.

Although there are internationally-agreed regulations for telecommunications dating from 1988, many countries want to modernise them and include internet.

But now divisions have emerged between western countries and a rival group, including China, Russia, and some Gulf states. They want more government control over the internet and say western dominance needs to be tackled.

In particular, the Netherlands is opposed to spam prevention measures contained in the treaty. These 'allow room for government control of internet traffic', Kamp said in his briefing. 'It is not acceptable to give governments the opportunity to censor internet and put constraints on digital freedom,' he wrote.

The new measures will come into effect in 2015, but only for the countries which have signed it. The US, Japan, Australia and Canada have also said they will not ratify the treaty.

More on this

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

No doubt the UK has signed up to this. That is what their Government want. Total control over the UK peoples.

By Karl H | 10 January 2013 8:42 AM

The UK, NZ, Oz and Japan also refused to back the UN Treaty (source: Huffpost 12/13/12).

By Puck | 10 January 2013 9:16 AM


I believe the UK stands along side NL and US on this one

By Stevie | 10 January 2013 10:36 AM

No Karl, the UK refused to sign the treaty as well. See this BBC article from December 2012.

By Darren | 10 January 2013 11:16 AM

No, Karl, the UK has also not signed up:

By H. | 10 January 2013 11:39 AM

You know any time Russia, China and the Gulf States vie for more control of the internet under the pretence of fair play, what they actually mean is censorship and suppressing freedom of speech.

By Quince | 10 January 2013 4:43 PM

You wonder why the UN would like to promote dictatorship in African countries together with in Russia, China etc. With this treaty the UN will be encouraging people like Asaad who's already doing it. We know what happened when internet is being monitored, we learned it from the last few revolutions, in Libya, Egypt etc.
This is not good for human rights!!

By Naniwewe | 11 January 2013 9:31 AM

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