Today, around the world countries are celebrating World Telecommunication and
Information Society Day under this year’s theme of protecting children in
This morning, I talked about how important it is that we do everything in our
power to create a healthy online environment for our children. I then had the
great pleasure to recognize 3 outstanding individuals who are working hard to do
At the beginning of this session, my colleague Mr Sami Al Basheer Al Morshid,
described exactly how dangerous the online world can be for children, and
underscored how important it is that the world adopts a coordinated approach to
deal with this threat. And he renewed not just ITU’s commitment to
connecting the world, but its commitment to connecting it responsibly.
I have already announced our year-long global Call-to-action to promote this
ideal. Thanks to the incredible support that has already been shown for this
initiative, I am determined – no, I am convinced – that a secure online
environment for our children will not remain an ideal but will become a reality.
Close collaboration with numerous UN agencies and other organizations have
already been incredibly positive, yielding such fruit as the Draft Guidelines –
I’d like to take a moment to thank all the co-authors of these draft guidelines
for their considerable efforts!
I’d also like to thank all COP members for their willingness to work with us,
and extend a special thank you to the EBU Director General and UNICEF. I can
honestly say that the COP initiative would not be possible without the kind of
support and good faith that all of you have shown.
COP is the kind of initiative that transcends borders, nationalities, and
politics. It’s the kind of initiative that brings out the best in us. And the
kind of initiative that reminds us of what it means to all belong to the same