ICANN Receives Arab World Award

by Baher Esmat on May 22, 2012

On a recent trip to Kuwait to receive one of the top awards in information technology in the Arab world, ICANN President and CEO Rod Beckstrom, with Vice President of Europe Nigel Hickson, and Regional Manager of the Middle East Baher Esmat, met with His Highness Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah Crown Prince of the State of Kuwait. In the magnificent Al-Bayan Palace, H.H. Sheikh Nawaf received the ICANN delegation together with Sheikha Aida Al-Sabah, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of H.H. Sheikh Salem Al-Ali Al-Sabah Informatics Award, and members of the Board of Trustees.

During the meeting, Sheikh Nawaf shared his interesting views and insight on cyber security and the role ICANN as well as other stakeholders can play to increase users trust and confidence in the online space. It was noted that ICANN plays a key role in securing the domain name system through its open, bottom-up process with stakeholder participation from all over the world.

This year, ICANN was the recipient of the prestigious Badge of Honor of H.H. Sheikh Salem Al-Ali Al-Sabah Informatics Award, a leading initiative to foster information technology development in the Arab world. This is the first time this award has been presented to an international organization. The selection of ICANN came in recognition for its role in coordinating and developing the Internet’s unique identifier systems, and its contribution to diversify languages and scripts used in the domain name space, including Arabic.

Rod Beckstrom, President and CEO, accepted the award on behalf of ICANN in an large ceremony attended by H.H. Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Crown Prince of Kuwait, top government officials, industry leaders, and 500 participants from all sectors including civil society and academia.

The ICANN delegation had several meetings with Internet community leaders in Kuwait, including with Sheikha Aida Al-Sabah, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Sheikh Salem Al-Sabah Informatics Award, and members of the Board of Trustees, Mr. Saleh Al-Asousi, Prof. Hussein Amin, and Mr. Bassam Al-Shammari. Another meeting took place with Kuwait’s GAC representative Mr. Qusai Al-Shatti, and leaders of Internet businesses in Kuwait. Key issues discussed during the meetings included DNSSEC deployment, L-Root deployment, IPv6 readiness, IDNs, capacity building, and engagement in ICANN’s various constituencies and processes.

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