If all of those who are attached to human rights and democracy refused to compromise their principles and used the Internet to defend freedom of expression, this kind of repression would be much more difficult. I am not talking about absolute freedom that opens the door to all sorts of abuses. Nobody is promoting that. Instead, I’m talking about real freedom, which is based on the principle of respecting human dignity and human rights.
In the last few years, multilateral institutions, such as the Council of Europe, and nongovernmental organizations, such as Reporters Without Borders, along with thousands of individuals around the world, have made a strong commitment to these issues. This is proof, if proof were needed, that this issue does not pit the West against the rest of the world. No fewer than 180 countries meeting for the World Summit on the Information Society acknowledged that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights applies fully to the Internet, especially Article 19, which establishes freedom of expression and freedom of opinion. And yet, some 50 countries fail to live up to their commitments.