LEGAL: COMMITTEE BEGINS WORKING PAPER ON CYBERTERRORISM

Tamara Kovacs for THE NEW YORK TIMES
Tuesday September 23

As the second session began, the UN Legal committee was quick to begin discussion.

South Korea suggested that the International Telecommunications Union could be mandated to resolve disputes, comparing the proposed role to that of the World Trade Organisation.

Despite some slight confusion over this, debate was flowing smoothly and a draft resolution seemed likely by the end of the day, with a surprising lack of animosity given the presence of the North Korean delegation in the room.

The mid-morning interruption of a major cyberterrorism attack on India only briefly rocked the committee. After a short unmoderated caucus, the committee formally discussed the event.

There was an outpouring of offers to provide aid and assist in the investigation, with Germany particularly condemning the attacks and offering its ‘deepest sympathies’ to the victims of the passenger jet collision that resulted.

The delegate for India, clearly moved by the offers of assistance, graciously accepted.

The delegate for North Korea was briefly embarrassed when they questioned the outpourings of support, and then revealed that North Korea was not ‘well-placed’ to offer any aid. They later accused the other delegates of ‘attacking’ their proposals.

But, the slights were quickly forgotten in favor of getting back to the working paper, with a new clause added regarding aid and assistance to states in the aftermath of major cyberterrorism attacks.

Productive discussions resulted in a working paper prepared by mid-morning, and a draft resolution was ready for release by lunchtime.

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