The signatories said that democracies enable “open public discussion, independent and pluralistic media” and the “free flow of data online and offline”, fostering legitimacy, transparency, responsibility, and accountability for residents and elected representatives likewise.
India, along with G7 countries and four invited countries, Monday approved the ‘2022 Resilient Democracies Statement’ in which they committed to “guarding the freedom, independence and diversity of civil society actors” and “protecting the freedom of expression and opinion both online and offline”.
A four-page statement, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined in the G-7 conference in Germany, said that “We, the Leaders of Germany, Argentina, Canada, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Senegal, South Africa, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the European Union, accept our commitment to enhancing the resilience of our democracies.”
“We barrage all heroic defenders of democratic systems that stand against oppression and violence, and will step up international cooperation to enhance the resilience of democratic societies globally,” it stated.
The signatories said that democracies enable “open public discussion, independent and pluralistic media” and the “free flow of information both online and offline”, fostering legitimacy, transparency, responsibility, and accountability for citizens and elected representatives alike.
And that they are prepared to protect these principles and are resolved to:-
- Protecting the freedom of expression and opinion online and offline and making sure that a free and independent media landscape through our work with relevant international initiatives is definite.
- Guaranteeing an open, free, global, interoperable, reliable, and safe internet.
- Enlarging the cyber resilience of digital infrastructure, including enhancing and sharing awareness of cyber threats and also expanding cyber response participation.
- Ensuring an open, free, global, interoperable, reliable, and safe internet.
- Increasing the cyber resilience of digital infrastructure, including improving and sharing awareness of cyber threats and expanding cyber response cooperation.
- Countering hybrid risks, in particular information manipulation and interference, comprising disinformation.
- Cooperating to counter data manipulation, improve valid information, and advocate for our shared democratic values worldwide.
- Promoting affordable access to diverse sources of reliable and loyal information and data, online and offline, including through a multi-stakeholder strategy, and by strengthening digital skills and digital literacy.
- Improving clearness about online platforms’ actions to combat violent, extremist, and inciting content online.
- The statement explained that democracies lay and conserve the foundations for free and vibrant civic spaces, enabling and encouraging civic engagement and political participation, which in turn stimulate meaningful legitimacy, creativity, innovation, social accountability, and responsibility.
It explained, “We commit to” :-
- Guarding the freedom of independence and diversity of civil society actors, speaking one’s mind against threats to civic space, and honoring freedom of association and friendly assembly.
- Building resilience against malign foreign interference and acts of transnational repression that seek to undermine faith in government, society, and media, reduce civic space, and silence critical voices.
- Progressing programs for the safety of human rights defenders and all those who are exposing corruption.
It is also said that democracies promote solidarity and non-discriminatory, diverse, equitable, accessible and inclusive environments, enabling decent representation and political participation.
The countries also committed to “protecting freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief and promoting inter-faith dialogue” and “promoting social cohesion, solidarity and the inclusion of all members of society both online and offline, while denouncing all forms of discrimination and violence”.