PrepCom3 negotiations
  First reading of documents progresses fast
  Geneva, 17 September 2003. Governments yesterday finished giving their general comments on the new Draft Declaration of Principles, moving on today to the Draft Action Plan in Sub-Committee Two (Content and Themes.) They plan to finish today receiving general comments from governments on the Plan of Action.

In an innovative modification of summit procedure, civil society, the private sector and some inter-governmental organizations have been intervening periodically on sections of the draft text, with specific contributions on specific paragraphs. Already several delegations have made reference to these contributions, emphasizing their value in the process.

At the same time, several informal sub-committees, most of them continuing work they began at the Paris Intersessional, have been meeting on specific contentious areas of the Declaration, in particular internet governance, the right to communicate, enabling environment, internet security, and media. These informal groups were initially open to civil society observers presence and limited participation, but their status as of now is not clear.

Meanwhile, Ms. Linda Mafole of South Africa is chairing a drafting committee focusing on the draft Declaration, which has begun meeting today to refine and shorten the Draft Declaration.

Up-to-date reports on the government negotiations, civil society proposals, interventions and other news can be found on

By Rik Panganiban, Reports Coordinator, WSIS CS News Centre

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