U.S. Statement as Delivered at the Fifth Session of the Ad Hoc Committee under Agenda Item 7 – Implementation
Thursday, April 20, 2023, Vienna, Austria
Thank you Chair.
In advance of our third session, the United States proposed that the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, the CCPCJ, be considered as the implementing mechanism for this convention. The CCPCJ is an existing international forum that already considers cybercrime issues, and which in our view could be efficiently and effectively adapted to serve as the home for implementation of this treaty. This proposal is also based on the positive precedent set by the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs and its role regarding the UN drug treaties.
In our view, the benefits of this proposal are clear: we would take advantage of existing means and capabilities to support our work, avoiding the need to establish a new stand-alone body; we would avoid duplication of efforts across the UN system; and we would avoid unnecessarily increasing the burden on the time and resources of member states and practitioners.
We are committed to our goals for implementation — effectiveness, efficiency, transparency, and inclusiveness — and able to be flexible on the appropriate means for achieving these goals.
As such, we appreciate the proposal developed by the co-facilitators of the informal session dedicated to this chapter. We note that this proposal advances many of the goals reflected in our original proposal, which we heard throughout the informal are shared by many member states.
My delegation is willing to work on the basis of the co-facilitators’ proposal and would like to offer some revisions to further strengthen the effectiveness, efficiency, transparency and inclusiveness of our future implementing body.
First, we prefer to use the term “conference of parties” rather than “conference of states parties,” in line with the proposal of the EU. While the terms are often used interchangeably, “conference of parties” is more concise and avoids unintended complications.
Second, the United States proposes a paragraph 2bis as follows: “In establishing its regular meetings, the Conference of the Parties shall take into account the time and location of the meetings of their relevant international and regional organizations and mechanisms, including their subsidiary bodies, and treaty bodies, consistent with the principles identified in Paragraph 3 of this Article.” This paragraph is intended to address the interest of many member states in aligning the meetings of the cyber-COP with the meetings of existing bodies such as the CCPCJ, UNTOC COP and UNCAC COSP.
Third, we propose edits to paragraph 3 such that the revised paragraph would read, “The Conference of the Parties, with a view to promoting broad participation, shall adopt rules of procedure and rules governing the activities set forth in this article, including rules concerning the admission and participation of observers including signatories, non-parties, and relevant stakeholders including non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, academic institutions and the private sector, and the payment of expenses incurred in carrying out these activities.” With no further changes to the rest of the paragraph. These revisions incorporate the inclusive language of Resolution 75/282 into the rules for the cyber-COP. I note here as well that the United States further proposes that references to “multi-stakeholders” elsewhere in this chapter be revised to refer to “relevant stakeholders.”
Fourth, the United States proposes deleting paragraph 5, and replacing it with a paragraph 6bis that would read, “For the purpose of paragraph 4 of this article, the Conference of Parties may establish and administer such review mechanisms as considered necessary to supplement the information provided by States parties and relevant stakeholders in accordance with paragraph 6 of this Article.” In addition, we propose edits to paragraph 6 indicating that the information must be provided on a “regular basis and as otherwise required by” the COP. Further we propose streamlining the l Second and third sentences to read, “The Conference of the Parties shall examine the most effective way of receiving and acting upon information, including information received from Parties as well as from competent international and regional organizations and mechanisms. Information received from relevant stakeholders shall also be considered.”
This proposal aims at clarifying that the primary means of reviewing the treaty’s implementation should be through the review of the information submitted directly to the cyber-COP by states parties and relevant stakeholders, rather than through more burdensome mechanisms. We are open to proposals from other member states that are aligned with this same goal.
Fifth, the United States proposes that paragraph 7 be revised to read as follows: “Pursuant to paragraphs 4 to 6 of this article, the Conference of the Parties may establish any appropriate mechanism(s) or subsidiary body or bodies to assist in the effective implementation of the Convention. This simply recognizes that the Conference should have flexibility in the number of mechanisms or bodies that are established to carry out its work.
Finally, in paragraph 1 of the subsequent article, the United States proposes that it read, “the Secretary-General of the United Nations shall designate the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime to provide the necessary secretariat services to the Conference of the Parties to the Convention.” We, like many other member states, believe that UNODC has the experience and expertise to effectively support the cyber-COP, and this should be reflected in our treaty.
The United States will, as always, submit these proposed revisions to the secretariat in writing.
Thank you Chair.