The United Nations on Friday approved a Russian-led bid that aims to create a new convention on cybercrime, alarming rights groups and Western powers that fear a bid to restrict online freedom.
The General Assembly approved the resolution sponsored by Russia and backed by China, which would set up a committee of international experts in 2020.
The panel will work to set up “a comprehensive international convention on countering the use of information and communications technologies for criminal purposes,” the resolution said.
Let there be no doubt at all that if China and Russia are spearheading this, their aim is to extend their Internet censorship from their own countries to the globe. Their idea of what is cybercrime is anything that their Government deem unhelpful to them.
The United States, European powers and rights groups fear that the language is code for legitimizing crackdowns on expression, with numerous countries defining criticism of the government as “criminal.”
New Zealand should make very clear that it will have no part on this treaty. If democratic countries refuse to get involved, then it will fail as it is only if other countries sign up, can China and Russia get what they want – global censorship.