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Thursday, April 18, 2024
HomeTechnologyBlinken emphasizes democratic values in technology at democracy summit.

Blinken emphasizes democratic values in technology at democracy summit.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken stressed the importance of ensuring that technology upholds democratic values, cautioning that authoritarian regimes often exploit technological advancements to undermine democracy and human rights. Speaking at the ministerial conference of the third Summit for Democracy in Seoul, South Korea, Blinken emphasized the need to shape a technological future that is inclusive, respects rights, and drives progress in people’s lives. This initiative, proposed by President Joe Biden during his 2020 campaign, aims to demonstrate that democracies are more beneficial to societies than autocracies.

As the democracy summit commenced, the Biden administration announced that six additional countries, including Finland, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Poland, and South Korea, were joining a consortium led by the U.S. to combat the misuse of commercial spyware. Concerns about the use of spyware to target activists, diplomats, and journalists have heightened, prompting the U.S. Treasury Department to sanction individuals and a Greece-based commercial spyware company for their involvement in developing, operating, and distributing technology used to target U.S. government officials and policy experts. This marks the first instance of the Treasury Department sanctioning entities for the misuse of spyware, underscoring the urgency of addressing this issue.

In separate discussions with South Korean Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul and President Yoon Suk Yeol, Blinken addressed matters concerning North Korea and the U.S.-South Korea alliance. These dialogues underscored the ongoing cooperation and coordination between the two countries on regional and global security challenges. The focus on upholding democratic values, countering the misuse of technology, and enhancing alliances reflects a commitment to safeguarding democracy and human rights in an increasingly complex and technologically-driven world.

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