Session 2-9 Transcript
(OEWG 2021-25)

This is an unofficial transcript

Ambassador Gafoor  


Distinguished delegates, good morning to you. The ninth meeting of the second substantive session of the Open-ended Working Group on security of and the use of ICT established pursuant to General Assembly resolution 75/240 or 31 December 2020 is called to order. Distinguished delegates, you will recall yesterday that we had begun the discussion on sub agenda item relating to capacity building. It is my intention to continue to take speakers under this sub-item on capacity building this morning. We will continue with the list of speakers and yesterday we had indications of wanting to speak from a few delegations, Germany, Malaysia, Brazil, Thailand, as well as Fiji. And other delegations wishing to speak on the topic of capacity building are invited to make your request by pressing the button. After this topic has been exhausted. I intend to move on to the next item under agenda item five, which is the topic of regular institutional dialogue with the broad participation of states. On that topic too, I would welcome any comments, interventions from delegations. Secondly, I wish to inform all delegations that this morning or late morning, in fact afternoon at 12:30pm, it is my intention to convene an informal informal meeting in conference room 11. This informal informal meeting would be an occasion to take stock of where we are on the question of modalities on stakeholder participation. The meeting at 12:30 would also be an opportunity for all delegations wishing to do so to offer any updates that they might have, or any ideas that they might have as to how we can move forward. Over the last few days, my delegation or my team, the chair’s team, and myself, we have received many feedback from many delegations on the question of modalities, I’ve also had the chance to have many conversations. And I wanted to have an informal informal meeting in order to offer a platform that is open and transparent to all delegations, so that we are all on the same page. And we are able to take stock as to where we are on the question of modalities. So that would be for 12:30pm this early afternoon. So we will continue with the list of speakers until around 12 to 12:30. We’ll adjourn the meeting and proceed to Conference Room 11. And this afternoon it is my intention to continue with the remaining items, which is agenda item six, under which I had envisaged an initial discussion on the content and structure of the annual progress report, which is going to be very important in terms of hearing your preliminary views as to how the annual progress report could be structured, what should be the content and how delegations are looking at it and what their expectations are. So that roughly is what I wanted to say at this point. And I’d like to now, in accordance with the agreement or the decision that we had on the first day, suspend the meeting and continue our work in informal mode to hear speakers on the sub item relating to capacity building. The meeting is now suspended. And we will now continue our work in informal mode to hear statements on capacity building and I give the floor now to Germany. Germany, please.


Thank you honorable chairman, Germany is fully aligned with the statement of the European Union and wishes to add the following points in a national capacity. Designed as an implementation focused platform, Germany’s convinced that the envisaged UN Program of Action could serve as an effective practical tool to deliver cyber capacity building solutions to your member states by respecting the UN principles as laid out in the report of the 2021 Open-ended Working Group. Germany fully echoes the elaborate suggestions made by France and Egypt in their statements yesterday. As a country benefiting from strong international partnerships in the cyber arena, Germany is also keen to offer cyber capacity building solutions to its international partners through a multitude of already existing programs, focusing on Africa, the Western Balkans and Eastern Europe, including Ukraine. As part of its Presidency of G7 states and working closely with the ECOWAS commission, Germany has launched an international partnership to strengthen the cyber resilience of West Africa at a national and regional level, directly responding to priorities communicated by the region. This partnership will include building cyber diplomacy skills, fighting cybercrime with a focus on the protection of vulnerable groups, strengthening data sovereignty, and developing skills and guidelines for the protection of critical infrastructure. With regards to the work of this group, Germany would welcome further elaborating India’s suggestion for UN cyber taskforce. Germany would like to echo the remarks made by Finland and Costa Rica, on the importance for the Open-ended Working Group to closely involve private sector actors at the conceptual and practical level, in preparing its recommendations under this agenda item. Germany welcomes the idea of considering an institutional role for the UN in the context of cyber capacity building as offered by Undersecretary General Izumi Nakamitsu in her opening remarks, and mentioned by France and the Netherlands in their statements. As a longtime supporter and donor, Germany welcomes the many instances in which UNIDIR has been brought in the discussion, also in view of playing a more practical implementing role, be it in the area of capacity building or Confidence Building Measures. Germany would like to remind all member states that UNIDIR is an independent institute, funded by UN member states on a voluntary basis. For this reason, this group cannot request work per say. However, the Open-ended Working Group can suggest areas of further research or work to UNIDIR, which would require additional resources to be provided by us the member states, thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you, Germany, I give now the floor to Malaysia please.


Malaysia associates itself with a statement delivered by Indonesia on behalf of NAM. Malaysia believes that the ability of the international community to prevent and mitigate the impact of malicious use of ICT depends very much on the capacity of each state to prepare and respond effectively. Capacity building can help create a culture of cybersecurity throughout the nation. Such a culture will support the development and maintenance of secure system and infrastructure, deepen the understanding of key actors on salient issues, and promote clear threat visibilities which are all essential in securing the digital future. Malaysia joins fellow ASEAN member states in recognizing the value of cyber capacity building initiative under ASEAN-like mechanism. In the context of capacity building efforts, Malaysia reaffirms that states should be guided by the principles contained in the paragraph 56 of the final substantive report of the 2019-2020 OEWG. Mr. Chair, Malaysia shares your assessment, as expressed during the virtual open ended informal meeting with the stakeholders yesterday, on the importance of stakeholder engagement that must be translated into more focused discussions around specific issues in the ICT sphere. These could assist stake in decision making processes, and the deliberative platform such as the OEWG. During our discussions on existing and emerging threats, Malaysia highlighted the imperative of cybersecurity baselining that is capable of being understood by all state stakeholders. Further, Malaysia proposed that OEWG facilitate the development of common cybersecurity baselines, by mapping the agreed norms in a manner that is comprehensible to all relevant stakeholders. This is crucial so that we can get we can together achieve a more accurate assessment of cyber maturity levels as we strive towards a more open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful ICT environment. In this regard, the OEWG can facilitate state’s effort by aligning capacity building requirements and assistance based on the cyber security baselines once these are developed. Malaysia notes with appreciation the constructive suggestion put forward by many delegations during the substantive session, which we believe could fit into the future formulation of appropriate cybersecurity baselines at the national, regional and global levels. As a start Malaysia support the constructive intervention by the UK elaborating on the linkages between on the other hand cybersecurity maturity and the national service of implementation, and on the other existing international bodies, international organization, regional organization and state funded cybersecurity programs. My delegations also welcomed the Women in International Security in Cyberspace Fellowship, a joint program of the governments of Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the United Kingdom and the USA. As a fellow myself, I have witnessed firsthand the advantages of this capacity building program, which has helped increase the knowledge and experience of women involved in cybersecurity through international professional networks. In the same context, Malaysia values Singapore’s proposal for a fellowship program. Mr. Chair, leveling up to targeted cyber security baselines and raising the bar in national cybersecurity situational awareness are directly related to the operationalization of the framework of responsible state behavior, which can be materialized through effective and sustainable capacity building. Thank you, Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you very much, Malaysia. I give the floor now to Brazil to be followed by Thailand, Brazil, please.


Thank you, Mr. Chair, allow me to begin by sharing some of Brazil’s efforts to strengthen our national capacities in cybersecurity which may be of interest to other countries, particularly developing countries, facing similar challenges. Brazil has been progressively improving its national digital framework, having adopted in the last few years, an Internet Bill of Rights, a Data Protection Bill, a Digital Transformation Strategy, and most importantly for the matter at hand, a National Cybersecurity strategy. We are proud to host two Computer Security Incident Response Teams (or CSIRTs) of national responsibility, one governmental and the other within our Internet Steering Committee, a multistakeholder organization. Both are active participants in information exchanges and trust building processes among CSIRTs, including the FIRST and the CSIRTs Americas. Furthermore, Brazil’s Cyber Defense Command has been organizing since 2018, the Cyber Guardian Exercise aimed at improving our capacity to defend our critical infrastructure from cyber threats. This year’s edition is expected to take place this summer, involving a variety of governmental, private, technical and academic sectors. Currently, we have been discussing internally ways to improve this framework and to better coordinate and leverage cybersecurity efforts on a sectoral as well as a sub national basis. In this process, we have benefited from studying other national experiences. In the same vein, we are open to share lessons learned with interested member states in the context of this group or bilaterally. Mr. Chair, the GGEs and the previous OEWG have achieved important milestones regarding language on capacity building, it is up to this group to make those provisions come to life. Brazil takes note, of the several suggestions made this session by different delegations, including the tabletop exercise and the fellowship proposed by Singapore. We believe that they constitute a good basis for a more focused discussion in the next session. The parameters for our efforts are well established on paragraph 56 of the OEWG report. All the principles there are important, including the ones mentioned yesterday by the distinguished delegate of South Africa. My delegation would like to emphasize another principle, which is political neutrality in capacity building. Mr. Chair. I have one final comment on the notion of the weakest link in the security chain, but I will defer it to what my written statement that can be seen in the UN website. Thank you so much.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. I give now the floor to Thailand please. [Mr Chair, we did not request the floor. Thank you.] Okay, my apologies then. I give the floor now to Fiji, please.


Chair, excellencies, I have the honor to speak on behalf of the 14 member states of the Pacific Islands Forum with presence here in New York. The Pacific Island Forum countries would like to offer us our thanks to the chair for your efforts to ensure the OEWG progresses its work in an inclusive and productive manner. We remain committed to working closely with you to make concrete progress towards our shared goal of peace and stability in cyberspace. In the board declaration, Pacific Island forum countries committed to addressing the wide range of security challenges in the region as one blue Pacific continent. Now this includes an emphasis on cybersecurity to maximize the protections and opportunities for Pacific infrastructure and peoples in the digital age. The borderless nature of cyber activity means regional and global cooperation is necessary to achieve our ambition of a peaceful and stable cyberspace. With the success of the previous OEWG, it is now time for the international community to implement the commitments agreed to in order to achieve the peace and security goals that we have all articulated. Pacific Island foreign countries welcomed the commitments to establish comprehensive capacity building initiatives. This capacity building ensures that the global threats to cybersecurity can be managed while furthering opportunities for all countries sustainable development. We are grateful for your efforts Chair to encourage concrete proposals through the guiding questions. It is only through capacity building and Confidence Building Measures that all states will be able to implement and uphold the framework of responsible behavior, and therefore enjoy the benefits of digital connectivity, which is an important enabler for economic, social and cultural development. To have the greatest possible impact and in line with the principle of the Sustainable Development Goals, capacity building initiatives must be nationally owned, sustainable, non-discriminatory and politically neutral. They must also contribute towards resilience against the greatest challenge of our generation, which is climate change. Chair, the January 15 volcanic eruption and tsunami in the Kingdom of Tonga and resulting in weeks long breakdown in ICT capacity during the critical post-disaster period provides an alarming example of our vulnerability in disasters. For our members need stakeholders who recognize the particular climate and disaster vulnerabilities of Pacific Island countries and who can partner with us to build capacity in climate resilient ICT infrastructure. Indeed, global research shows that for every $1 spent on building resilience to catastrophic events, saves up to $7 in response and recovery. We must urgently ensure that ICT, including cybersecurity infrastructure, is climate and disaster resilient. Our blue Pacific relies on the rules based international order that has promoted peace among our global family for over half a century. The challenges we collectively face today are numerous and will not be overcome without peaceful dialogue. In this light, we call on all members of the international community to honor and uphold their commitments to international law and norms of responsible state behavior, which apply in cyberspace. Pacific Island Forum confirms our commitment to continue to work with the OEWG through regular institutional dialogue and an inclusive process which respects the capacity of smaller countries and missions to engage. We look forward to working with you and all members throughout the period of this OEWG to tangibly improve global cybersecurity. Chair in addition, I’d also seek sometime to make some remarks in my national capacity. Chair even the transborder nature of cyber threats, the global community is not safe unless all countries have adequate and resilient ICT and cybersecurity ecosystems. Fundamentally, we need a collective response. In future proofing the work of this group, Fiji recommends that the OEWG fully consider, and as mentioned earlier, the protection of critical ICT infrastructure including substantive efforts in mitigating events or circumstances in which communication networks and ICT infrastructure may be disrupted. The availability and affordability of digital technologies underscores the socio economic development for our peoples. We are of the view that only through such a harmonized, predictable, targeted approach can we securely bridge the global digital divide and hope to turn the tide of these global cyber attacks. In that regard, Fiji strongly supports coordinated and sustainable capacity building initiatives which are indeed a confidence building measure. Fiji also appreciates the initiatives that have been proposed by member states like Singapore, UK, Israel, France, Egypt, Germany and Australia to name a few, both while we are in the sessions and even in our bilateral meetings. We recommend the capacity building initiative considerations include attachment or internship programs, which should give further insight and practical considerations that need to be taken into account by states whose requisite agencies are in infancy stages. Furthermore, that such capacity building initiatives include the transfer of both knowledge and technology and access to good practice and internationally acceptable cybersecurity standards. In closing, and in addition to my previous statement Chair, Fiji also welcomes and supports the following capacity building initiatives such as the UN Singapore cybersecurity fellowship, tabletop exercises, and the CMM assessment. Vinaka chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you very much for the statement. I give the floor now to Malawi please.


Thank you chair and all distinguished delegates. Malawi supports and agrees that when it comes to cybersecurity, capacity building is a must and supports the call that the OEWG promote capacity building among all member states. There is need to recognize the digital divide between states as asymmetries do exist. So capacity building efforts should also have this in consideration. Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility of all member states. Malawi commends the tremendous efforts achieved by most developed states in this field and believes that they are an essential capacity building resource that we can all learn from. If capacity building asymmetries persist, we shall remain as strong as our weakest link. Therefore, we call for collective efforts to strengthen all weak links through capacity building. As one of the developing countries we recognize that we also have a significant role to play. Identifying our needs, and developing need-based strategies for capacity building is a must. That’s why we support the submission by the UK on the relevance of cyber maturity assessments like the Oxford model. As a country that has conducted and benefited from such an exercise. We can attest that our first assessment provided us with a baseline of where we stood when it came to cybersecurity and helped us formulate a strategy that targeted our needs. The second assessment that came four years later has enabled us to track our progress and identifying areas that we need to review in our strategy. However, our challenge remains: How do we get the appropriate capacity building on some of the areas that we identified? if we all have to contribute to the cybersecurity fight effectively, we need to be on the same page. And capacity building is very central at achieving this. As stated by others, we believe the OEWG can significantly promote capacity building at a global level. Still regional bodies and organizations like UNIDIR can also play a vital role. There is need to encourage sharing of information and have a platform and a database that states can use to identify the available capacity building programs. Malawi further agrees that capacity building in this context shouldn’t not be politicized should be done in a neutral non discriminatory manner and be needs-based. Like Canada, Malawi support that any capacity building efforts should also consider gender issues. Lastly, we commend the UK government and others for sponsoring the UN Women in Cyber Program, as the program continues to build a lot of capacity for some of its beneficiaries, including myself, thank you so much.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you very much, Malawi. I have no other requests for the floor under the sub item on capacity building. I don’t intend to summarize the discussion, but I wanted to say that I was very, very encouraged by the discussions on capacity building. The tone was very positive, very focused. And I’m particularly encouraged that so many delegations spoke: more than 40 by my count. And I was also very gratified that so many developing countries took the floor and I think this is a very good sign. And the participation was across the board – north and south, east and west – clearly shows that there is a high level of expectations in terms of what we can do, potentially, and what we can do to build on what we have already achieved in the previous Open-ended Working Group. Second, I was also very encouraged by the very substantive and detailed proposals put forward by many delegations and very gratified also that delegations were responding to each other or reacting to the proposals by commenting on other proposals received, which again, shows that there are many positive ideas on the table. So we all need to reflect on how we can take these proposals forward, how we can take them further as we prepare for the July session. Now, at this point, since there are no further speakers on capacity building, I’d like to move on to the next sub item under agenda item five. And this relates to the sub topic entitled: establish under the auspices of the UN regular institutional dialogue with the broad participation of states. And in that context, we will also look at initiatives of states in this regard. So the floor is now open on regular institutional dialogue. And I start with the Islamic Republic of Iran, followed by the European Union. Iran, please.


Thank you, Mr. Chair and good morning colleagues, Chair the Islamic Republic of Iran continues to support the central role of the United Nations in advancing security in the ICT environment. through international cooperation. The intergovernmental character of any regular institutional dialogue should be preserved and respected to avail all UN member states of the opportunity for inclusive, transparent and open ended participation similar to the current OEWG. Any contribution from the private sector, civil society and academia into intergovernmental machinery should come through informal intersessional consultations and other mechanisms such as the Internet Governance Forum. The OEWG should continue its function until an open ended and all inclusive intergovernmental body for consultation, cooperation and decision making in cyber relative issues are established by the United Nations. Besides other observations on the Program of Action, it looks more like a mechanism for reviewing norm implementation and capacity building instead, establishing a subgroup for the commencement of negotiations on a comprehensive cybersecurity convention is very needed, replicating the United Nations small arms and light weapons Program of Action model, which has yet to prove its effective value in preventing, combating and eradicating the illicit trade of small arms and light weapons does not serve the purpose, the context as well as the scope, technicality, dynamicism and complexity of the ICT are far from identical and incomparable to the narrow scope of the UN small arms and light weapons Program of Action. The more we compare, the less we come to grip with the fact that the ICT should be action-oriented with the same prescription. The experience of the UN small arms and light weapons program of action shows that procedural approaches such as the POA are inherently challenging and instead we should move towards legally binding instrument on cyber security. We are of the view that a conflict-free development oriented, transparent, fair, moral and peaceful cyberspace requires a legally binding instrument to fill the legal gaps arising from the unique features of the ICTs. Such a legally binding framework would lead to a more effective global implementation of commitments and a strong basis for holding actors accountable for their actions. I thank you, Mr. Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. European Union please.

European Union

Thank you, Chair. I have the honor to speak on behalf of the EU and its member states, the candidate countries Turkey, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania, the country of the stabilisation and association process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine, Republic of Moldova and Georgia align themselves with this statement. I represent over 35 states. Our discussions on cybersecurity in the United Nations have led to a valuable progress with successive UNGGE’s and within the first Open-ended Working Group. Their consensus reports have managed to consolidate a solid framework based primarily on the application of international law, norms, rules and principles of responsible state behavior, Confidence Building Measures and capacity building. Listening to the statements by countries in the room for the past four days we have heard a clear need to move forward urgently with the implementation of this comprehensive framework with capacity building in this regard, rather than starting the effort afresh. Increasing capacities and common and concrete understanding on the framework will broaden our joint ability to enhance security and stability in cyberspace, while respecting human rights. For that purpose the EU together with, meanwhile, 57 UN member states proposes to establish a Program of Action to advance responsible state behavior in cyberspace. The POA would offer a permanent, inclusive and action-oriented mechanism within the United Nations on the use of information and communication technologies in the context of international security. We warmly welcome the new co-sponsors that have expressed their support for the POA over the last days, and look forward to continue our cooperation with all the co-sponsors. The POA’s main objectives will be to strengthen the framework and to support the implementation of it, notably through tailored capacity building efforts based on concrete actions that are needed to adhere to the UN framework and states assessments on their needs in this regard. In addition, the POA will allow for exchanges between relevant experts on the best practices and lessons learned on concrete issues for implementation. The POA should also allow for engagement with the multistakeholder community in an appropriate manner, allowing for meaningful exchanges and cooperation to advance an open, accessible, stable and secure cyberspace for all. Our respective efforts are complementary, noting that the participation of other stakeholders is inherent to the character of cyberspace. They have a role in the core functioning of cyberspace, and in contributing to the implementation of our recommendations and our decisions. The EU and its member states also see great potential for complementarity between the POA and the Open-ended Working Group. For instance, the Open-ended Working Group could exchange on challenges for the implementation, providing valuable input for the establishment of the POA. In order to ensure the complementarity between the Open-ended Working Group and the POA, the Open-ended Working Group could facilitate timely and dedicated exchanges on the POA taking into account the specific views and needs of all states and relevant stakeholders and ensuring that the Open-ended Working Group is regularly informed about the state of play on the establishment of the POA. Let me again, give a warm welcome to all the new co-sponsors and thank the existing co-sponsors for the good cooperation that we had over recent months. We are looking forward to continue that cooperation to advance a global, open, stable and secure cyberspace. As this is also the last time that I take the floor in the substantial session today, let me also thank you, Chair and all the colleagues this week for the good discussions that we had on cyber issues. And let me reiterate also our full solidarity with Ukraine and the Ukrainian people. Thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. I give now the floor to Chile to be followed by Egypt, Chile, please.


Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Our country attaches great importance to institutional dialogue on the responsible behavior of states in the use of ICTs. In this regard, we wish to highlight the reports of the OEWG and the GGE, and their appeals to states to continue to strive to promote the framework for responsible behavior of states in the United Nations and in other regional and multilateral fora, and to support periodic initiatives ot dialogue, consultation and capacity building that are inclusive and transparent, and are also consensus driven and action oriented. Both reports also take note of the existence of a series of proposals to promote the responsible behavior of states in the use of ICTs, which inter alia would support the capacities of states to fulfill their commitments with respect to their use of ICTs. Both reports also highlight the Program of Action of which Chile is a co-sponsor, along with more than 50 countries, and which we believe is of great importance. And it must continue to be worked on as pointed out by the Open-ended Working Group in its report, the nature of existing threats in cyberspace, which occur on a daily basis and which pose a huge risk not only for development and the well-being of countries, but also for International Security, means that there is now an urgent need for us to be able to establish a mechanism for ongoing dialogue and work that will enable all stakeholders to work together to successfully tackle such threats. The Program of Action I just mentioned, seeks to establish a permanent, inclusive and action oriented instrument to promote tangible cooperation in countering the malicious use of ICTs. And the main aim of it is to facilitate the implementation of a consensus framework for the responsible behavior of states in the use of ICTs. For this reason, the POA would support capacity building based on state’s own needs assessment, it would also facilitate the exchange of best practices and experience between high ranking experts and would promote the meaningful commitment of multiple stakeholders that is with civil society, academic community and private actors, who also bear the responsibility of contributing to the fight against the malicious use of ICTs. Finally, in essence, the work of the POA would focus on the implementation of the framework we agree upon as an outcome of the work of the previous mechanisms of the GGE and the OEWG, they could also be used to support the implementation of any future agreement on the use of ICTs in the context of international security. For this reasons, we would invite other countries and more specifically the countries of our region of Latin America and the Caribbean to join this important initiative. Many thanks to you Mr. Chairman.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Egypt, please to be followed by Thailand, Egypt.


Thank you, Mr. Chair. Egypt, and so many delegations that have highlighted over the last few days, the urgent need to move forward to turn from the conceptual discussions and endorse the recommendations phase into the operationalization level. Thus, it is important to establish a regular institution platform, working in a complementary manner with the OEWG and focusing on streamlining capacity building efforts and activities with a review of assisting developing countries and enhancing and bolstering the information security and emergency response capabilities. Therefore, the proposal of POA co-initiated by Egypt and France and co-sponsored by almost 60 countries is timely and will play a vital role in this regard. The POA was already reflected in the final outcome reports of the 2021 GGE and OEWG. And also the co-sponsors have submitted a working paper of the proposed POA against the first substantive session of the OEWG during last December to further discuss and develop a POA with all member states in an inclusive and transparent manner. Co-sponsors have been working on further elaborating the POA and its working paper, while reaching out to member states and also they are working to improve the working paper to have a more practical steps towards establishing the POA to be submitted against the third session of the group. In this vein, we welcome all delegations to take part in this initiative and join in informal discussions which would allow addressing concerns and views of all member states. Regarding the validity of the POA regular meetings and review mechanism, it is important to be guided by a UN relevant disarmament process, which is the practice or re-establish practice for establishing any UN process. Therefore, it is possible to hold a regular meeting every two years as well as review conferences every six years. There is also considerable established technical working groups to follow up the POA working during the intersessional period to address the exponential evolving nature or the cyber issues. With regards to the question on the optional time for establishing the POA we believe that it is timely to establish it as soon as possible while developing countries are in a dire need of cybersecurity related support. In our way the digital divide increased rapidly. As discussions on legally binding and instrumental and also prevent establishing a platform to address capacity building, which is again is critical to developing countries. Therefore, it is important that the OEWG consider establishing the POA through its annual progress report to complement the work of the group. I thank you Mr. Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you, I give the floor to Thailand to be followed by Netherlands. Thailand please


Thailand is of the view that the OEWG should remain a cornerstone for fostering inclusive dialogue and international cooperation on the use of ICTs by states. The proposal to establish a regular institutional dialogue should lay out clear goals and mandates of such mechanism, and most importantly, it must be compatible and complimentary with the OEWG. We also reiterate that such dialogue needs to be inclusive in nature. With regard to the proposed Program of Action or POA, Thailand thanks all states that have engaged with us under proposal. We appreciate that the proposal aims to complement OEWG’s efforts, particularly in operationalizing the norms of responsible states behavior in cyberspace. In this regard, we continue to welcome further dialogue under proposal, including specific details, such as on organizational matters, so that all parties can study the work plan and prepare their roles accordingly. Furthermore, Thailand would like to share the following two points. First, Thailand firmly adheres to norms adopted by the GGE and OEWG, and also recognizes the need to develop guidance and recommendations on how to operationalize these norms, which seem to be in line with the POA’s objectives. We would be interested to see how the POA or other mechanism can translate these norms into practice at the global level, and how the POA can assist states, especially developing ones in effectively adhering to such norms. And second, while we agree that existing obligations under international law are applicable to the use of ICTs by states, Thailand is of the view that there remain questions as to how international law applies, as well as whether gaps exist. Such differences in the interpretation of international law may also result in the divergence of states practices, including how they implement rules, norms and principles of responsible state behavior. Therefore, we would like to see that the regular institutional dialogues, including the proposed POA, play a significant role in developing a universally accepted and common understanding of international law applicable in cyberspace, especially in the absence of a legally binding instrument on this matter. To this end, Thailand stands ready to further exchange views with all parties in order to help make the existing and future regular institutional dialogues as effective as they can be. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement Netherlands to be followed by Austria. Netherlands please.

The Netherlands  

Thank you chair. We align ourselves with the statement made by the EU and would like to add some additional remarks in our own national capacity. Before the Netherlands answers explicitly your questions or regular institutional dialogue, I’d like to address a specific point that had been raised throughout the week. Chair, we noted with great interests all the suggestions for UNIDIR to undertake additional research and activities. The Netherlands supports many of these requests. Keeping in mind that unit air is an independent research institute within the UN, which relies on voluntary funding to conduct its activities. We would now like to answer your question on the last agenda item and to finish on a positive note and reflect on a future institutional framework under the auspices of the United Nations to promote an open, free and secure cyberspace. As stated in a report of the previous Open-ended Working Group, endorsed by us all, any future mechanism for regular institutional dialogue should be an action oriented process with specific objectives, building on previous outcomes, and be inclusive, transparent, consensus driven and results based. The Netherlands believes that those should be our guiding principles for any discussion on a regular institutional dialogue. For The Netherlands this means the main focus should be to look at what is required to follow the ones we already agreed upon. I would now like to take a moment to emphasize the inclusiveness of such a process. Of course, it should allow for all UN member states to participate. While being an intergovernmental process, it should include meaningful engagement with the multistakeholder community. Given the unique character of cyberspace, they have a role to play as owners of the infrastructure, the technical expertise and as users, whether it’s about securing supply chains, mitigating cyber incidents, or enhancing resilience states are just one category of stakeholders, we cannot do it alone. An open free and secure cyberspace can only be achieved if we work collectively as states by abiding by the UN framework we all agreed upon, and collectively as a society by engaging the private sector, the technical community and civil society. Because international peace and security relies on the commitment of all parties involved in securing the digital world our societies rely upon. It is time to be action oriented, and start the implementation of the agreement normative framework. We should not waste time, it is time to act. A regular institutional dialogue should be a place to one, monitor and share best practices and expertise. Two support national implementation of the normative framework. Three, look at how to concretely address new challenges and four, provide concrete backup for capacity building projects. The Program of Action has all the potential to provide a perfect venue for such a regular institutional dialogue. We hope that the progress report will reflect those points, and that we can all agree upon the creation of such a platform as soon as possible. Thank you very much Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement, Austria to be followed by Pakistan. Austria, please.


Thank you very much, Mr. Chair. At the outset, we fully subscribe to the remarks made earlier by the European Union. In my national capacity, I’d like to make two suggestions. On the topic of regular institutional dialogue, we believe that one way to add value to the work of our group, and thus strengthen the regular institutional dialogue we all strive to, would be by focusing its work more specifically during the sessions. During the sessions we’ve had so far, there have always been discussions on all sub items on the agenda of this group. In our view, I think we could benefit from dedicating half sessions or entire sessions to one or two sub items only. This would enable delegations to prepare more thoroughly for those issues and thus enables substantive discussions that go beyond general points and more into specifics as we’ve started to see during this session, and thereby enriching the work of the group even further. To name one example in the area of international law such an approach would allow for more detailed legal arguments focused on specific areas in international law, and thus contribute to further consensus building. In addition, this would allow for more specific engagement with various stakeholders, as we know that not all of them have identical expertise in all subject areas that this group is covering. Focusing on specific issues could allow the most relevant stakeholders to participate in the most broadest way, thus increasing the efficiency of the group’s work. And in addition, member states also could tailor their delegations for such in depth sessions by including experts from relevant ministries and authorities to share their expertise. Mr. Chair a promising way of strengthening the implementation of the political framework elaborated by past GGEs and OEWGs can be the establishment of a Program of Action, which we, like now close to 60 Member States, support wholeheartedly. Building on the existing framework, the POA can serve as a vehicle to build capacities, increase confidence and close the digital divide. Thereby providing a forum to work on issues that matter. The allegations in this group, including our own see is vitally important. Focusing on implementation, it can allow tailored approaches to respond quickly to arising needs, and adapt swiftly to new developments in the ICT environment. We look forward to hearing other proposal aimed at creating a meaningful regular institutional dialogue. And I thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Pakistan to be followed by France. Pakistan, please.


Thank you Chair. Pakistan believes that the future institutional dialogues must encompass all aspects of cybersecurity metrics at the UN, and should continue to play the central role in the promoting such dialogue. All future dialogues must be diverse and should be geared towards genetic consensus on all issues of cybersecurity, in the context of international peace and security, such as the identification of existing and potential threats, non-binding norm building, application of international law in cyberspace, capacity building, CBMs and increasing digital divide. In addition to this states must be encouraged to get engaged in similar dialogue at bilateral, regional and subregional levels. I Thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. France to be followed by Cuba, France please.


Thank you very much chair. Chair, my delegation aligns itself with a statement made by the European Union and we’d like to add a few comments in our national capacity. For almost 20 years now, discussions between states and a series of working groups created by the General Assembly has allowed us to analyze the evolving challenges posed by the use of ICTs and international security, and also to forge a normative framework for responsible state behavior to lead to stability and security of cyberspace. Throughout the session, my delegation has highlighted the importance that attaches to continuing these discussions within this group in order to update our knowledge and understanding of the threats in cyberspace and also to continue to make this normative framework more clear and as well as the modalities for implementing of it. In addition, my delegation has advocated for the continuation of these discussions in addition the implementation of a standing mechanism to support this, in line with the wish expressed by her representativeness Izumi Nakamitsu in her statement at the beginning of this week. To this end, France with Egypt, and now 57 other United Nations member states as well as the European Union is promoting the establishment of a Program of Action understood as a institutional standing permanent institutional mechanism that is dynamic, inclusive and action oriented, which could work in a coordinated and complementary fashion with ongoing work and deliberations within this group. Chair to respond to your first question, I would like to share the following suggestions as regards how this international regular dialogue could be structured as part of a Program of Action. Firstly, the POA would establish an institutional framework that includes a voluntary reporting mechanism and regular meetings to ensure a follow up of national effort implementation efforts of a normative framework and identify best practices but also needs met by it needs addressed by each state in the implementation of a normative framework. Secondly, as my delegation said previously in discussions on capacity building, the program would provide a stamp of permanent platform to support capacity building action, and meeting the needs identified by states. Thirdly, the Program of Action would also be dynamic and would allow discussions on new challenges particularly posed for example, by technological evolution for the implementation of a normative framework. The POA could, where needed, lead to the creation of technical working groups that would meet intersectionally to study these challenges. It could also take into account the adoption of potentially new norms in the future perhaps and support the implementation of these potential new norms. Fourthly, the Program of Action will allow states to establish in fields where they see necessary a dialogue and structure cooperation with private actors to the research and civil society. And as much as these actors could contribute to strengthening international ICT security, the POA could thus foster discussions on securing supply change and spreading culture of cybersecurity as well as exchange of chains between public and private sectors was also the coordinated sharing of weaknesses. On your second question on the institutional characteristics of this Program of Action, I would like to refer to the proposals made by our Egyptian colleagues on the possible periodic nature of the meetings on a Program of Action. Chair, following the converging recommendations of the reports adopted in 2021 by the GGE and by the first OEWG we plan on working, particularly within the framework of this group, with all those who support the Program of Action as much as all states interested and under your leadership to further elaborate this proposal in an inclusive fashion so that it can be implemented soon. Here, I would like to thank the states who have indicated that they are amenable to continue discussing in a constructive fashion the content of this Program of Action and how it would tie in with the Open-ended Working Group. We remain available to continue these discussions, provide clarifications on the thinking that is underway amongst the co-sponsors and take their views into account as we continue to develop the Program of Action. I would also like to warmly commend all states, and thank those who’ve declared their support for the Program of Action during this session. Thank you very much.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Cuba, followed by South Africa. Cuba please.


Mr.Chairman, United Nations is the multilateral forum par excellence and the main platform for addressing the concerns of its member states with respect to security, and the use of information and communications technologies. It must play a lead role when it comes to promoting regular dialogue between states geared towards achieving an open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful ICT environment. As such, the OEWG is the only inclusive mechanism that we have as Member States to discuss those issues related to cybersecurity in a transparent manner and on an equal footing. This is the intergovernmental mechanism that will make it possible for us to establish periodic institutional dialogue to prevent and tackle existing and potential ICT threats. And this would be in accordance with General Assembly resolution 75/240. The responsibility lies with this forum to formulate recommendations that will enable us to ensure that there is institutional dialogue on an ongoing basis. Therefore, we are in favor of continuing work in this framework so as to yield results based on the consensus of all states. And this is unlike those that were previously reached in spaces with limited memberships, such as the Group of Government Experts. We support action oriented initiatives, but we are not in favor of parallel mechanisms that seek to replace the work of the OEWG. Mr.Chairman, we have carefully reviewed the Concept Note presented by the sponsors of the initiative geared towards a Program of Action. We observed that although the note does refer to holding periodic meetings and follow up conferences, it does not provide for a cycle of preparatory meetings to agree upon any future content, as has been the practice with respect to similar initiatives in other United Nations bodies. It is our view that any cyber security initiative must be the result of a recommendation of this Open-ended Working Group. And it must be based on a broad based process of discussion among member states and it should be adopted by consensus. The content of any Program of Action or indeed, any other action oriented initiative must take on board the concerns of all states. In Cuba’s opinion we must refrain from including or imposing issues or items that do not attract consensus or have not been agreed upon in our open-ended working group. It is our view that the basis of an initiative of this type cannot only be those norms proposed by the Group of Government Experts. We must also take into account the norms that were set out in resolution 73/27 of the General Assembly – the final report of the previous OEWG and discussions held within the framework of this new group. Thank you very much, Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. South Africa to be followed by Canada, South Africa, please.

South Africa  

Thank you, Chairperson. The United Nations General Assembly under which this OEWG sits is best place to facilitate inclusive and transparent deliberations among its member states towards the development and implementation of measures to increase stability and security in the use of ICTs as well as to prevent ICT practices that are to be harmful or that may pose threats to individual member states or international peace and security. International collaboration is critical in securing cyberspace nationally and globally. We recognize the need for global coordination and cooperation on matters regarding cybersecurity. South Africa is ready to work with relevant and appropriate international organizations and governments in line with our constitution and existing international arrangements. It would be ideal for the OEWG to agree on a method of collaboration that promotes a coordinated global response to matters related to cybersecurity. This could include regular dialogue to assess the needs of states with regard to, inter alia, further elaboration of possible norms and principles as needed, Confidence Building Measures, capacity development, and overall coordination of national points of contact. South Africa has stated before that the cyber domain is developing rapidly, and that it is unlikely that the international community will be able to develop a comprehensive and sustainable response. We therefore underline the importance of implementing the work already done while considering how best to update our response to developments in this regard. It is also in this context that we believe that the proposed Program of Action on implementation is a welcome contribution to our deliberations towards an action oriented approach, and should go hand in hand with capacity building and strengthening our global response to cybersecurity challenges. South Africa looks forward to gaining greater clarity on the modalities of this proposal, including how the POA would function, and where it would be situated within the UN system. Finally, for South Africa, it would be important to consider implementation, including the POA proposal, within the current OEWG as the only way to maintain unity and cohesion between the different strands of our important work. I thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Canada to be followed by Australia. Canada, please


Thank you Chair for giving me the floor and for allowing us to share specific ideas on what a regular institutional diet could look like under the auspices of the United Nations and in a way in which it could be structured. Before doing that, I’d like to underscore that in recent days we’ve spoken about a certain number forms of globally approved forms of cooperation and as has been affirmed this exercise is linked to capacity building and we would like to thank them for all their efforts. As you know, Canada is a co-sponsor of the Program of Action as well in addition to more than 50 other states. We believe that the implementation of what we have achieved already within the UN will meet urgent needs of states to increase their resilience and will also foster peace and stability in cyberspace. As you’ve heard from my French colleague, we do believe that the Program of Action that we are discussing could be a permanent inclusive and results focused instrument. And this is why I’ll be different from mechanisms such as the GGE and the OEWG. The OEWG could continue to work on the acquis within this process, but the Program of Action will then focus on the implementation of this. Once the POA has been created, the two processes would work in a complementary fashion to achieve our common objectives. Chair, you also asked what characteristics this direct dialogue would have? Would they have specific objectives or a vision mechanism. A POA should be underpinned by a study of real needs of different countries and this is why Canada supports the proposal to carry out the Australia and Mexico proposal included in the most recent report of the OEWG. Today I’d like to congratulate my Australian and Mexican colleagues for their tireless work and the launch of the study. This will allow national submissions to be much more detailed than in the previous format. [Unclear] will be complementary to the OEWG thus we would talk about the modalities of participation of stakeholders too. Canada continues to believe that stakeholders not only have an important perspective, but also resources and essential expertise to support the implementation of norms and capacity building. We’d like to underscore that the proposal of a Program of Action was noted in the consensus report adopted by the OEWG and the GGE last year. As is recommended in this report, we intend to continue the joint development of this proposal take into account the points of views and concerns of all states. To this end, we continue to carry out consultations and share discussions with interested members in an inclusive and open fashion. We would also like to inform you that we are currently developing a research document on political options and operational recommendations for a potential cyber Program of Action. The document would focus on how it is created, its architecture and its technical guidelines. We would also thus hope to be able to provide more specific recommendations on what a permanent mechanism which is action orientated, inclusive, transparent and results focus would look like. We plan on publishing this document on the OEWG portal and to create a space where the document and its recommendations could be discussed in advance. Chair, an ICT environment that is free, open safe, stable, accessible and peaceful is essential for everyone. It requires effective cooperation between states so they can reduce the risks to international peace and security. This is the ultimate objective of the Program of Action and this is what it’s trying to achieve and swear we’ll continue to work with other countries to make progress on the draft POA. Thank you very much.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Australia to be followed by Switzerland. Australia, please.


Thank you chair, responding to the call to establish a permanent, inclusive, transparent institutional dialogue with broad participation under the auspices of the United Nations as enunciated in the 2021 OEWG and GGE reports. The UN Program of Action is a recognition that now is the time for action. Concrete action and cooperation are needed more than ever to address the challenges posed to international peace and security by malicious uses of cyberspace and Australia joins over 50 states to support and promote the Program of Action as a vehicle to take this work forward. I’d like to align with the statements related to the Program of Action that have been made by Egypt and France and many other co-sponsors. The UN Program of Action will consolidate and leverage greater political awareness and commitment to preempt and respond at the speed of relevance. Providing all states the ability to use cyberspace for peaceful and prosperous purposes and safeguarding the benefits of a free, open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful cyberspace. As capacities and capabilities to implement the framework of responsible state behavior in cyberspace differ worldwide, many states require concrete support and cooperation in their efforts to implement this framework. And as malicious cyber activities grow and scale sophistication and severity, the need to support these states in addressing their vulnerabilities becomes even more urgent. The POA proposal aims at establishing a permanent, inclusive results oriented instrument to further international cooperation and support states in the implementation of existing commitments. It would support tailored capacity building based on states assessments of their own needs to develop exchanges of best practice and experience between relevant experts. And I’d like to align with the statement of France and Egypt yesterday on capacity building elements of the Program of Action. The POA is an opportunity to really further the cooperation on capacity building and hopefully using a dedicated funding mechanism. Additionally, multistakeholder organizations can make a valuable contribution to the POA. The evolving equities of non government stakeholders in cyberspace and technology make public-private partnerships essential. Often the first affected by ICT incidents, they are the protectors of critical infrastructure the benefactors and beneficiaries of two-way expertise and cooperation with the multistakeholder community practically implements and impacts security, it lifts capacity and it creates a reinforcing cycle of development. I’d like to note the Swiss proposal that the OEWG could recommend establishment of the Program of Action in its first annual progress report. And depending on our discussion and decision on the structure and content of that annual report, this proposal warrants further consideration. I’d also like to note that Australia can support the practical proposals from the EU on how the OEWG can provide a forum to discuss and elaborate the POA proposal in an open way. And I also very much appreciate Thailand’s point that the Program of Action must be aligned with and complementary to this Open-ended Working Group. I thank you, Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Switzerland to be followed by Japan, Switzerland, please.


Mr. Chair, with a view to establishing a regular institutional dialogue on international cybersecurity under the auspices of the UN, we believe that we need a strong international platform that is action oriented and that provides us with an implementation track allowing us to deliver on the commitments we took by consensus. The Program of Action, an initiative supported by a growing cross regional group of states and already included in both the GGE and the Open-ended Working Group consensus reports would provide such a platform. The POA should in our vie, be the regular institutional dialogue under the auspices of the UN. It will focus on implementation, capacity building and allow for inclusion of the multistakeholder community. These are distinct features that would ensure  complementarity to the Open-ended Working Groups work and would allow us to go into more depth to discuss concrete and technical issues and make tangible progress on the ground. In addition, the POA would provide a periodic opportunity to assess whether additional actions are needed to respond to challenges in a rapidly evolving ICT environment. The POA is a living instrument and proposal. We encourage all interested states to join the discussions and to contribute so that we can build together a platform fit for purpose, and beneficial for all. It would provide us with an implementation track. The Open-ended Working Group, on the other hand, would be the forum for discussions and mutual exchange of information and continue. Mr. Chair, in our view, the optimal time for regular institutional dialogue to be established is now. We’d like to therefore repeat the suggestion we made yesterday that this Open-ended Working Group could in its first annual progress report recommend the establishment of the POA. Finally, I would like to echo the statements by Germany and The Netherlands on the very useful role that UNIDIR can play in supporting our work. Many delegations made references to UNIDIR’s role and the presentation of the national survey was a good example for this, but we should not forget the unit here is an independent and voluntary funded organization and that we as the Open-ended Working Group cannot request or mandate UNIDIR to conduct specific work. Additional work can only be conducted with additional resources. Thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement. Japan to be followed by Singapore, Japan, please.


Thank you chair. Japan is up the view that it is very important for the international community to establish a forum of discussion and information sharing concerning the use of ICTs. This will enable the international community to take on existing and new issues as they arise. The Program of Action proposed by France and Egypt which we co-sponsor can provide the framework under which regular and institutional dialogue can take place to facilitate the implementation of the consensus framework for responsible state behavior in the use of ICTs. The Program of Action will identify the challenges and promote relevant actions as well as cooperation. It will provide support for capacity building efforts and foster meaningful multistakeholder engagement. Creating action oriented goals will be useful and periodic review conferences could be held to assess the implementation of the framework of responsible faith behavior. We believe the Program of Action can work in a complementary and coordinated manner with the OEWG. The OEWG is a forum for discussion among all UN member states and the POA is a forum for implementing the agreements reached at the OEWG. Japan, as a co-sponsor of POA, will continue to reach out to states to garner the support of as many states as possible for the establishment of the POA. Thank you very much.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you. Singapore to be followed by the Russian Federation. Singapore, please.


Thank you, Mr. Chair. Sustaining a regular institutional dialogue is a key tool for our collective efforts in the security of and in the use of ICTs. It is important that international cyber policy discussions are not fragmented or duplicated, as this will likely lead to conflicting understanding or interpretations of issues. Multiple overlapping and duplicative processes are particularly challenging for developing states and small states, many of whom face manpower and resource constraints, and will have difficulty participating meaningfully in parallel processes. We think that this OEWG is the most natural platform to engage in discussions on regular institutional dialogue, because it is open, inclusive and transparent, and all 193 member states are represented here. States have proposed action oriented goals and substantive proposals at the OEWG which would pave the way for further dialogue and cooperation to ensure that they are beneficial and correspond to the needs of member states. As one of the co-sponsors of the Program of Action proposal. Singapore therefore looks forward to discussing and elaborating on the POA within this OEWG. Our collective vision is to enhance the security of and in the use of ICTs. This can only be achieved through consistent engagements, regular institutional dialogues, complemented by concrete proposals and actionable outcomes. Any steps we take should build on the strong foundation, as well as positive momentum that is already in place. This will ensure that these efforts would contribute effectively to the progress of our work at this OEWG. Singapore therefore echoes the statements from many nations including South Africa, Japan and Egypt, and agree that the POA should complement the work of OEWG and we should establish it through our annual progress report. Thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you, Russian Federation to be followed by India. Russian Federation please.

Russian Federation

Thank you very much chair. As part of the thematic discussion on regular institutional dialogue, we would like to note that following the recommendation, as enshrined in the consensus final report of the OEWG, that it would not be appropriate to duplicate efforts in the area of international information security within several bodies. We believe that the OEWG should remain the only negotiating mechanism under the UN to deal with these issues. We also believe that the decision on the future format for regular institutional dialogue, whether through the continuation of the OEWG or its transformation into a permanent mechanism, could be worked out by states at a later stage of the group’s activities. During the first session of the OEWG a number of states, including Russia, expressed a proposal to consider the prospects for interaction and exchange of experience in the field of international information security between the OEWG and regional organizations. In our view, this is a useful idea from the point of view of exchanging experience between our group and regional platforms, primarily the CIS, the SCO, the OSCE, the ARF and others. With the understanding that it is the UN that should play the leading role in fostering dialogue on the use of ICTs by states. Thus as part of the SEO for example, China, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, 11 years ago in 2011, jointly created a code of conduct for ensuring international information security. Then this document was updated, bearing in mind the comments and proposals that we received from all parties, and with the co-sponsorship of Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan we disseminated this as a document to the 69th session of the UN General Assembly on January 2015. We believe that cooperation and exchange of experience between the OEWG and regional organizations can be organized in a format of regional consultations, to separate sessions, intersessional events with the participation of senior officials or representatives of regional organizations. Thank you for your attention.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement, India to be followed by El Salvador, India please.


Mr. Chair, as we have seen in the last few sessions, the cyberspace and its associated key dimensions such as existing and potential threats, norms, rules and principles for responsible behavior of states and cyberspace, application of international law to the use of ICTs, CBMs and capacity building, do not stand in isolation but are integrated as a homogeneous entity that evolves continuously with emerging technologies and innovation in the future. Previous GGEs and OEWG report of 2021 discussed these aspects in detail, and the necessity of having a regular intergovernmental dialogue to discuss, plan, implement, and review a list of effective and resilient mechanisms that ensure an open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful ICT environment. We believe that a regular intergovernmental institutional dialogue would function as an open and inclusive platform for member states to progress from policy oriented discussions to action oriented cooperation measures. My delegation believes that a regular institution dialog under UN supports the shared objectives of strengthening international peace, stability and prevention of conflicts in cyberspace. In the context of an increasing dependency on ICTs, and the potential threats emanating from their malicious use there is a need to continue to further develop common understanding for member states build confidence and strengthen international cooperation. An inter governmental dialogue would enable capacity building for the member states, which in turn enable implementation of the normative framework. An important advantage of regular instituition dialogue under the UN is further building mutual confidence among sember States. Mr. Chair, any future dialogue should not duplicate existing union mandates, efforts and activities. A future dialogue on international cooperation on ICTs in the context of international security, should integrate various aspects of ICT environment, such as rising awareness, building trust, confidence, and encouraging deeper study and discussions on areas where no common understanding has emerged. Thank you, Mr.Chair.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you for the statement, El Salvador, you have the floor please.

El Salvador

Thank you very much chair. With respect to periodic institutional dialogue, El Salvador would support the initiative to establish one under the auspices of the United Nations. Our view is that dialogue such as those being promoted through this OEWG is a way to share effective information and to know the position of other states with the aim of establishing common ground as we have heard several times from other delegations, this would build confidence globally and it is our collective aspiration to have a secure cyberspace and therefore dialogue is very critical. We therefore support the proposed POA and we are one of the proposals. We believe that this is an important initiative to come up with periodic exchanges on cybersecurity and to continue discussion generated in this working group and it is also a way to promote a safe environment in which ICTs can be used our delegation’s view is that this POA could be focused on discussions on this set of themes and we could generate reports that would be open to all states. We could also begin discussions to agree on common language on cybersecurity. The dialogue that would be established should be approved by Member States and seek common and relevant objectives, which would help us to come up with actions and deadlines to verify such actions through agreed processes. One way of providing continuity of dialogue is to have periodic meetings. In closing, I wish to thank you very much, Chairman, for leading a very fruitful discussion. Thank you.

Ambassador Gafoor  

Thank you very much for the statement. Distinguished Delegates, we have four more speakers. And I intend to take up these four speakers under this agenda item on regular institutional dialogue in the afternoon when we resume our work at 3pm. I had mentioned earlier that we will have an informal informal meeting on modalities for stakeholder participation at 12:30 in conference room 11 and I thought I’ll give delegations some time to catch your breath before we meet in the other meeting room at 12:30. I resume the formal meeting of the substantive session and I adjourn the meeting and we will see you at 3pm at this conference room, Thank you.

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