Report to ISOC – WSIS+10 meeting

Pattaya Key Messages – Voices from the Asia Pacific – Comment on WSIS+10 Review Non-paper September 2015

 

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PICISOC REPORT ON THE WSIS+10 MEETING

PATTAYA, THAILAND 3-5 SEPT, 2015

It was a privilege to be invited to participate in this event as the sole representative from the Pacific Islands region within the 38 member group. It gave me an opportunity not only to meet up with Asian participants I had met at other events, but also to make new friends and contacts. It was also a first for me to be able to share concerns and constructive contributions from the grassroots of Pacific users towards a document that will go to a UN decision-making body.

The most significant point of difference for me during the discussions with the predominantly Asian group was their more focused attention on internet governance issues such as human rights and cybersecurity while the issues of ICT development in the Pacific were more basic – related to accessibility, capacity gaps and affordability.  It was pleasing to see these issues were also of concern to Pacific Leaders at the recent Forum Leaders meeting a few days later.

I have great admiration for the skills and knowledge of those who led the group, with particular mention to Anja Kovacs who had a huge role in crafting the final document with the assistance of a second team in which I was a member. I realise that the document has been written at a high level so that individual issues that were raised, particularly about the Pacific, have been included within the broader context of issues related to marginalised groups in small islands developing states and other under-developed parts of Asia. Being only 1 person in 38 raising these issues, I sometimes felt that Pacific concerns were swamped by other issues which were supported by multiple representatives from similar backgrounds or from the same country. Anja ensured that all issues were contained in “UN-speak” within the final document. I also appreciated the agreement of the group to attach our more explanatory original document to the second paper that was based on the formal non-paper (attached).

WSIS-Thailand 2015

WSIS-Thailand 2015

THANKS

Many thanks to Rajnesh for inviting the PICISOC Board to select someone to attend this meeting and to the Board for choosing me.  I also thank Olivia for making worry-free travel arrangements, and while it was great to see Naveed at the event as well, I truly appreciated the great care that Thip took of me from the time I emerged out of customs at Bangkok airport until she dropped me off again for my homeward journey.

 

Maureen Hilyard

PICISOC

Cook Islands

19 Sept 2015.

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