Freedom of Expression Should Be Guaranteed in Public and Virtual Sphere, Paet Says at Conference
In his opening remarks at the Freedom Online Coalition conference in Tallinn, Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said today that the 23-member coalition stands up for freedom of expression in both public as well as virtual space, which requires close co-operation from the public and private sector.
Paet also highlighted the role of social media in obtaining information from places wracked by crises and stressed the need to protect defenders of digital freedom in countries where civil rights and basic rights are being violated.
The minister said that even though the freedom of expression is sometimes abused to spread false propaganda, it should not be an excuse for curtailing Internet freedom; instead, the focus should be on education to give people skills they would need to be critical of false information.
The conference held on April 28 and 29 in Tallinn brings together 460 participants from more than 60 countries. The discussions focus on ensuring a free and secure Internet in the future.