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UN group favours greater government roles in Internet despite Western objections

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – The chairman of a U.N. telecommunications conference says it has adopted a resolution endorsing greater government roles in Internet affairs.

The move is a blow to U.S.-led efforts to keep new regulations from touching the Net. The U.S. and others fear any nod for greater government roles could open the way for more Internet restrictions and monitoring.

The American delegation chief, Ambassador Terry Kramer, says he will push to roll back the decision, which was adopted early Thursday after marathon Dubai talks by the U.N. International Telecommunications Union.

The chairman, Mohammed Nasser al-Ghanim, says there was no vote, but the proposal was adopted by consensus after taking the “temperature of the room.”

Negotiations over the final treaty end Friday — the first update of U.N. telecoms regulations in 24 years.