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Vice FM stresses human rights-based approach to new digital technologies

This photo, provided by the foreign ministry on Feb. 25, 2021, shows Second Vice Foreign Minister Choi Jong-moon attending a virtual international forum on multilateralism. (Foreign Ministry)
This photo, provided by the foreign ministry on Feb. 25, 2021, shows Second Vice Foreign Minister Choi Jong-moon attending a virtual international forum on multilateralism. (Foreign Ministry)
Second Vice Foreign Minister Choi Jong-moon has stressed the importance of a human rights-based approach to new digital technologies, citing privacy concerns and other side effects, during an international human rights meeting, the foreign ministry said Wednesday.

Choi made the remarks during Tuesday's virtual panel discussion that South Korea, Austria, Brazil, Denmark, Morocco, Singapore and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) co-organized ahead of the 47th regular Human Rights Council session slated for June 21-July 15.

"Rights to health, freedom of expression and access to information could be guaranteed in the midst of COVID-19 through such new digital technologies," Choi was quoted by the ministry as saying.

"On the other hand, side effects, such as concerns about privacy breaches and a digital divide, were created, which well explains the importance of a human rights-based approach to new technologies," he added.

Choi also explained that South Korea has capitalized on new technologies in responding to the new coronavirus, particularly for contact tracing, the use of leftover vaccines and vaccination certification.

The session came amid lingering concerns that artificial intelligence and other new and emerging technologies could hurt privacy and other rights absent globally established digital regulations and norms. (Yonhap)
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