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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs gains a new department for cyber diplomacy

12. September 2019 - 13:34

At its session today 12 September, the government endorsed the proposal of Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu to establish the Department for Cyber Diplomacy. The development of international cooperation in cybersecurity is also added to the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“Countries are increasingly prioritising cybersecurity and safety in their foreign policy aims and our allies see Estonia as a leader in this field,” Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu said. According to the Foreign Minister, the new department, headed by the Estonian Ambassador at Large for Cyber Security Heli Tiirmaa-Klaar, will allow Estonia to participate more efficiently in global discussions on the subject and ensure our continued pioneering role in this field.

The department will begin work this autumn and its prospective staff of advisors comprises officials of the Foreign Ministry who have already previously worked on various aspects of cyber diplomacy. As cybersecurity is among Estonia’s priorities as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, one of the first great tasks is to compose a work plan for the department. The department will also contribute to sectoral discussions in international organisations, promote bilateral and multilateral relations, supervise development cooperation in the cyber field and participate in formats related to internet freedom.

Cyber diplomacy mainly concerns state behaviour in cyberspace and their compliance with cyber norms, trust-building measures and existing international law. Several cooperation formats have been established in this field at the UN, the EU, the OSCE, NATO, the Council of Europe, the OECD and other international organisations.

Additional information:

Britta Tarvis
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia
Communication Department
+372 637 7627 / +372 5194 7045

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