OEWG held second substantive session

The second substantive meeting of the UN Open Ended Working Group (OEWG) took place in New York from 10-14 February.  

On rules, norms, and principles, a visible polarisation occurred between delegates to those who stood for implementation and operationalisation of already agreed upon norms of the 2015 Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) framework, and those who considered existing norms insufficient for the current cyber landscape.

In addressing the applicability of international law to cyberspace, most representatives agreed that the main focus needs to be on clarifying how to apply the existing international law to cyberspace. Identifying gaps in the current regulations and the need for an additional international binding regulation were discussed in detail. 

Delegations also discussed which regional CBMs ready to be recognised on a global level, and supported the idea of establishing a global repository of CBMs as well as a global repository of points of contact.

The representatives addressed the role and principles for capacity building, national efforts to enhance cybersecurity and resilience, regional and international cooperation and development assistance in capacity building efforts, the link between capacity building measures and the sustainable development goals (the SDGs), as well as fora for further discussions on this topic.

On future institutional dialogue, a number of states expressed support to the creation of new mechanism or platform under the UN auspice open to participation of all states stakeholders, while the majority expressed scepticism regarding the creation of any additional institutional mechanism on cyber issues. The majority of states stressed that existing UN formats that are dealing with ICTs should not be duplicated and that budgetary challenges in financing a new mechanism should be considered. 

Substantive reports from all the sessions of the second OEWG meeting are available here.