Joint call to respect human rights on Internet from Council of Europe Secretary General Jagland and Austrian Vice Chancellor Spindelegger
Vienna/Strasbourg, 23 November 2011 – Austrian Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger and Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland made a joint call for the respect of human rights standards also on the Internet in the run-up to a conference in Vienna co-hosted by the Council of Europe and the Austrian Foreign Ministry on “Our Internet – Our rights, Our Freedoms”.
“Human rights are universal and they must be protected off-line and online. We must not tolerate double standards when it comes to important issues such as the right to privacy or data protection”, the Vice Chancellor said and Secretary General Jagland adds: “Access to the Internet has become essential to enjoying democratic freedoms. Citizens should be able to benefit from a maximum of rights while at the same time being subject to a minimum of risks. This is the big challenge we are facing.”
The conference brings together representatives of the private sector, the civil society and governments to discuss how best to protect human rights on the Internet. Participating will be, among others Richard Allan, director of facebook Europe, Daniel Domscheit-Berg from Openleaks, Simon Hampton, director of European Public Policy of Google and BBC journalist and broadcaster Nik Gowing.
The conference is to provide decisive impetus to the Internet Governance 2012 - 2015 strategy of the Council of Europe that is currently being prepared. Freedom of the media and the Internet and the protection of journalists are among Austria’s priorities in its human rights policy.
Venue: Diplomatic Academy, Favoritenstraße 15a, 1040 Wien
Date: 24 and 25 November 2011, from 9:00 am
Media representatives are requested to register with the Press Department of the Foreign Ministry by e-mail to pk-anmeldungen(at)bmeia.gv.at.
The conference language will be English. The live stream of the conference can be called up at http://bmeia-webtv.ots.at/live and the conference website.
Austrian Foreign Ministry:
Sonja Linskeseder; sonja.linskeseder(at)bmeia.gv.at; phone: +43 (0) 501150 3315
Council of Europe:
Jaime Rodríguez; jaime.rodriguez(at)coe.int; phone: +33 (0) 6 89 99 50 42