"Nothing can stop the freedom of expression in the world today, and nothing in this conference will be about it," he said. Such claims are "completely (unfounded)," Toure, secretary general of the International Telecommunication Union, told AFP.
"We must continue to work together and find a consensus on how to most effectively keep cyberspace open, accessible, affordable and secure," UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said.
Google has been vocal in warning of serious repercussions, saying that "Some proposals could permit governments to censor legitimate speech — or even cut off Internet access," noted Google’s Vint Cerf in a blog post.
Google is also arguing that the ITU is not the right body to address Internet issues. "Only governments have a vote at the ITU," he pointed out. Google claimed in a blog post Monday that preliminary talks saw some "frightening proposals" discussed, including an Arab states' proposal to have the ITU take over the allocation of Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. The United States previously said that it would oppose any major revision to 24-year-old global telecommunications regulations.