SINGAPORE (AFP) –
The head of the Internet overseer ICANN conceded Thursday that the United States may have to extend its control over the group beyond September as governments bicker over a replacement regulatory regime.
Fadi Chehade, chief executive of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, said he still hoped that a new oversight system could be agreed in time.
“I will be more disappointed if the transition happened but we are disunited and lose the trust of the world because (stakeholders) are fighting so hard for special interests and forget the public interest,” he said in an interview with AFP. “We are ready for both scenarios. We are ready if the contract needs to be extended a bit and we are ready if it ends.”
ICANN is in charge of assigning Internet domain names and the numbering codes that lie behind online addresses. It has been overseen by the US government since its inception in 1998, under a contract that expires on September 30.
by Bhavan JAIPRAGAS