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Ukrainian Representatives to ICANN Ask for Russia’s Domain to Be Revoked, Local DNS Root Servers Shut Down

A letter sent to ICANN and IANA by a Ukrainian representative to ICANN’s Government Advisory Council (GAC) asks for urgent and strict sanctions against the Russian Federation in “the field of DNS regulation.” The letter urges ICANN to permanently or temporarily revoke Russia’s top-level domains “.ru”, “.рф” and “.su” and to shut down DNS root servers located in Saint Petersburg and Moscow. ICANN is also asked to assist in revoking SSL certificates for the Russian domains. A separate request is also being sent to RIPE NCC asking it to “withdraw the right to use all IPv4 and IPv6 addresses by all Russian members of RIPE NCC (LIRs - Local Internet Registries), and to block the DNS root servers that it is operating.” Ukrainian representative said the “atrocious crimes” that have been made possible are mainly due to the Russian propaganda machinery using websites continuously spreading disinformation, hate speech, promoting violence and hiding the truth regarding the war in Ukraine. “Ukrainian IT infrastructure has undergone numerous attacks from the Russian side impeding citizens’ and government’s ability to communicate.”

Regional Internet Registry for Europe, the Middle East and parts of Central Asia (RIPE NCC) has so far taken a neutral stance and stated that it “does not take positions with regard to domestic political disputes, international conflicts or war.”

“[I]t would be a terrible idea if ICANN were to intervene and start pulling down entire domain extensions due to this sort of demand,” notes Michele Neylon, CEO and founder of Blacknight, an Irish domain registrar and hosting company. He writes: “The internet is used by everyone—whether they are supporters of a regime or not, denying everyone in Russia access to it would be a terrible idea for many many reasons. If nothing else it would also play into Putin’s narrative about the west and embolden him and others to push forward with plans for alternatives to the current internet. And that is not a good thing at all.”

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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