18 September 2005 - Civil Society Orientation Session (10:00am - 5:00pm)


18 September 2005; 10:00am - 5:00pm

The
first day of WSIS Prep Com 3 already promises to be volatile. Yesteday’s (18
Sept) Civil Society Orientation Session – intended to cover innocuous
preliminaries like “Actors, Process and Structures”, “Presentation of State of
Art for the Tunis Summit”, “Civil Society at WSIS” and “Internet Governance”
(what it means, how the internet works etc) – featured at least two white
elephants straining to break free. One was the issue of Tunisian government’s
prevention
of Ligue Tunisienne des Droits de l’Homme (Tunisian League for Human
Rights, LTDH)
to hold its 6th Congress on 7th September 2005. When this
was raised, it was repeatedly (and perhaps rightly? though it does beg the question, where then?) stated that this issue was
not an appropriate topic at this session.




The next was an issue of
accreditation, where Human Rights in China (HRIC) questioned the rejection of their three inch thick (!) application despite
forwarding to the WSIS Executive Secretariat (whose business is to, amongst
others, handle accreditation applications) an audited report of their donors. Some
response about rules and procedures were given by Charles Geiger, from the
Executive Secretariat, which was promptly and articulately shot down by Sharon
Hom, Executive Director of HRIC who in turn, demanded for transparency in reason.



jac smk









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