We must bring what is happening in Belarus to the world’s attention and hear from those on the ground. Briefers on #BYHumanRights: UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, Anaïs Marin; Belarusian opposition presidential candidate Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya; Vice-Chairman of the Viasna Human Rights Center, Valiantsin Stefanovic; Legal Expert for the Belarusian Association of Journalists, Volha Siakhovich. The meeting is chaired by Urmas Reinsalu, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia. The meeting was initiated by Estonia and co-sponsored by UN Security Council members the United States and United Kingdom, as well as Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, and Ukraine.

The Estonian Presidency of the UN Security Council holds a landmark discussion on cybersecurity

On Friday 22 May Estonia is organising a landmark meeting that focuses on cyber stability, cyber norms and international law as part of its Presidency of the UN Security Council. Prime Minister of Estonia Jüri Ratas will make an opening statement from the Tallinn. The event is chaired by Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu from Tallinn and Estonia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Sven Jürgenson from New York.

“A pioneering country with extensive experience in the cyber domain, Estonia wishes to ensure that the Security Council makes serious efforts to prepare for emerging threats. Now is the right time to discuss how to prevent conflicts in cyberspace and how states can protect their digital infrastructure more efficiently. The coronavirus crisis is further accelerating the digital transformation of states; however, this is why we must pay particular attention to the information systems of hospitals and other medical institutions. Online cybercrime is also still here. With our friends and allies, we must continually look for ways to keep up with various threats when ensuring our safety,” Prime Minister Jüri Ratas said.

According to Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu, as a Security Council member Estonia has demonstrated its ability to advocate for the principles that were part of its membership campaign.

“Already during our membership campaign we promised to bring the issue of cybersecurity to the Security Council. We took the first step in March when we formally raised the issue of cyberattacks for the first time at the Security Council alongside the United States and the United Kingdom. Drawing attention to the principles of cyber stability with an open discussion as part of our Presidency is another important milestone in cybersecurity becoming a part of the foreign and security policy mainstream,” Urmas Reinsalu emphasised.

“As is the case with other events of the Estonian Presidency, the meeting has generated great interest. We are bringing together around 60 participants from across the globe: as of now, 59 states have signed up, as well as international organisations like the International Red Cross and INTERPOL,” Estonia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Sven Jürgenson added.

The Security Council and other UN member states will be briefed by global experts: the UN High Representative for Disarmament Izumi Nakamitsu, Chief Executive of the Cybersecurity Agency of Singapore David Koh and the Director for Technology Policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies James Lewis.

The meeting is open for participation to all UN member states as well as non-governmental organisations. The event can be watched on the Foreign Ministry’s YouTube and Facebook channels and on the websites of the Foreign Ministry and the Estonian Mission to the UN. Online news portals will also stream the event.

The event is co-organised by Security Council members Belgium, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia, as well as Kenya. The meeting is in English and held on the secure virtual events platform Hybridity, which was developed in Estonia. More information: https://globalvirtualsolutions.eu/

 

Indicative schedule 

10.00 Welcoming words by Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu

10.05 Opening statement by Prime Minister Jüri Ratas

10.15 UN High Representative for Disarmament Izumi Nakamitsu

10.22 Director for Technology Policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies James Lewis

10.29 Chief Executive of the Cybersecurity Agency of Singapore David Koh

10.36 Statements by co-organisers (Belgium, Dominican Republic, Indonesia and Kenya)

10.50 Statements by UN Security Council members

11.30-… Statements by other member states of the UN and international organisations