An international web symposium on the issue of Internet governance in the context of the Russian-Ukrainian war was held at the National Yang Ming Chao Tong University (National Yang-Ming Chiao Tung University, School of Law, Taiwan) in Taiwan. Today, Taiwan plays a leading role in the field of advanced digital technology and cybersecurity and it is no coincidence that it has the status of an "Asian tiger".
The first panel of the symposium was devoted to the topic "Internet as a sanction: a rational and conditional request of Ukraine to ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Domain Names and Numbers)" (June 10, 2022). The second panel of the symposium was devoted to the topic "Managing the Internet in a real war - the impact of ICANN on the Internet community" (June 16, 2022).
The online recording of the web symposium is available for viewing at https://nctulaw.webex.com/nctulaw/ldr.php?RCID=e63eda42d2879e2631e596f5a9edd0b7
The symposium was moderated by the distinguished Dean of the Faculty of Law of the National Yang Ming Chao Tong University (Taiwan) Thomas Chih-hsiung Chen, as well as the President of the Taiwan Internet Governance Forum and ex-Director of the ICANN Council (Taiwan Internet Governance Forum; ex-ICANN Board Director) Kuo-Wei Wu.
The State University of Trade and Economics was represented at the international web symposium by Ruslan Melnychenko, Head of the Department of Legal Support of Business Security, who spoke at the first panel on "Problems of Internet governance in information warfare and cyber threats". The speaker stressed that today Internet security is no longer a matter of purely Ukraine or Taiwan - it is a matter of the international community. In the 21st century, with advanced digital technologies and the global development of the Internet, no country in the world can solve the problem of its national cybersecurity on its own in the context of information warfare and hacking attacks on critical infrastructure. Information warfare and cyber threats today pose a much greater threat to the economic and political sovereignty of any state than the military-industrial arsenal, as in the previous century. The speaker stressed the inadmissibility of "closing" the Internet and fragmenting the Internet on the principle of "national political interests" of individual states or regional unions. However, it was stressed that the Internet could not be used as a tool for information warfare and a source of incitement to war.
The precondition for holding this web symposium was that on February 24, 2022, Russia launched a full-scale war against Ukraine. On the 28th of the same month, Mykhailo Fedorov, Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, immediately sent a request to Goran Marby, President and Chief Executive Officer of ICANN, to impose a number of sanctions aimed at restricting access of the Russian Federation to the Internet, including the rejection of the domain name '.ru' and other related authentication names, as well as the closure of some root DNS servers.On March 2 of the same year, Goran Marby announced the impossibility of fulfilling Ukraine's request due to various technical and political reasons. At the same time, he stressed that only a wide range of unhindered access to the Internet can allow the public to obtain reliable and diverse information.
This situation provoked the world Internet community to think about the following geopolitical issues: 1) What role should the existing mechanism of Internet governance play during martial law? 2) Given the brutality of the war, are there values of the highest power capable of influencing Internet governance given the fundamental nature of such? 3) What effective tools does the online community use globally to foster consensus on online governance?