Originally posted on National Post | News:

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Canada is refusing to sign a United Nations telecommunications treaty over fears it would give governments control over the internet.

Canada is part of a Western bloc, including the U.S., Britain, and several European nations, that is snubbing the new treaty which was expected to be signed Friday at the end of ten days of hard negotiations at the World Conference on International Telecommunications.

A rival group — including China, Russia, Gulf Arab states, African nations and others — favoured UN backing for stronger government sway over Internet affairs and claimed the Western dominance of the Internet needed to be addressed.

The unraveling of the conference displayed the deep ideological divide at the 193-nation gathering in Dubai, where envoys grappled with the first revisions of global telecom codes since 1988 — years before the dawn of the Internet age.

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