Press release - 817(2009)

Council of Europe to call for cross-border human rights and legal cooperation for the Internet at the 2009 IGF

Strasbourg, 03.11.2009 – The Council of Europe will be calling for greater protection and respect for human rights, rule of law and democracy on the Internet at the 2009 Internet Governance Forum (IGF) on 15-18 November in Sharm el Sheikh (Egypt).

Contributing to the IGF´s 2009 theme “Creating opportunities for all”, the organisation will present its position on the key subjects of the event: security, openness and privacy, access and diversity, Internet governance, the management of critical Internet resources and emerging issues such as the impact of social networks.

How do the management of Internet infrastructure and the interference with Internet access affect the right to freedom of expression? How can children be protected from sexual abusers that use the Internet for their crimes? Which tools exist to prevent and prosecute cybercrime? Can the marketing of counterfeit medicines on the net be stopped? How can privacy be safeguarded?

This UN event will be an opportunity for the Council of Europe to debate the answers to these questions and other current hot issues with other Internet stakeholders. It will also allow to share with them its legal standards and recommendations on various fields such as the public service value of the Internet, freedom of expression, the education and protection of children, data protection, cybercrime, e-democracy and counterfeit medicines sold online.

At the event, the Council of Europe will also seek the accession of states that are not members of the organisation to international conventions such as the Convention on Cybercrime, the Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse, the Convention on the Protection of Individuals with Regard to the Automatic Processing of Personal Data and the Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism.

A new convention is being prepared against counterfeiting of medical products and similar crimes focusing on public health protection. It will criminalise the marketing of counterfeit medical products via the Internet. It is expected to be open for signature in 2010 after its formal adoption.

The Council of Europe is organising and co-organising six workshops at the 2009 IGF:

It will also organise an Open Forum on freedom of expression and access to information, and international cooperation in connection with critical internet resources

The Council of Europe’s written contribution to the IGF “Internet – Creating opportunities for all” is available at For further information on the IGF:,


The Committee of Ministers of the organisation recently adopted a decision for the Council of Europe to provide the secretariat of the European Dialogue on Internet Governance (EuroDIG) in cooperation with European Union institutions and other organisations. Already held in 2008 and 2009 as a preparatory meeting for the IGF, the EuroDIG is a platform for discussing and shaping a European perspective to Internet governance.

Contact: Jaime Rodríguez;; mob. +33 (0) 6 89 99 50 42

Council of Europe Directorate of Communication
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11