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ICANN Concludes 22nd Meeting with Major Announcements on AfriNIC, sTLDs & IPv4

Over 600 delegates from 80 countries gathered in Mar del Plata, Argentina, to participate in ICANN's 22nd International Public Meeting. These meetings constitute an essential part of ICANN's global Internet Community consensus-development and outreach efforts. ICANN conducted a series of important workshops on DNS Security, Domain Name Hijacking, the World Summit on Information Society (WSIS), and coordinated further discussions on Whois Policy development and Internationalised Domain Name (IDN) implementation.

The week's meeting culminated in the ICANN's Board of Directors public voting and approval of the following items:

  • Full recognition of AfriNIC as the fifth Regional Internet Registry, dedicated to the allocation of numbering resources for the Africa region.
  • The formal adoption of a global policy on IANA Allocation of IPv4 Blocks to Regional Internet Registries developed by the Address Supporting Organisation (ASO) and the Number Resource Organisation (NRO).
  • The designation of two new sponsored Top-Level Domains (sTLDs)- .JOBS & .TRAVEL.
  • Changes to ICANN's bylaws in support of the new Address Supporting Organisation (ASO) Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and the number of GNSO council representatives.

Present at this meeting were 33 members of ICANN's Governmental Advisory Committee, Internet country code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) Managers, Business leaders, Registrar and Registry groups, Non Commercial Internet users, Intellectual Property holders and Internet Service Providers from across the region and the world. There were three separate workshop discussions on ICANN's Strategic Plan and a number of regional At-Large meetings with user groups from across Latin America.

Any press enquires should be addressed to Tanzanica King at ICANN on +1 310 301 5804. Any follow-up questions or requests can be sent to

About ICANN:
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is an internationally organised, non-profit corporation that has responsibility for Internet Protocol (IP) address space allocation, protocol identifier assignment, generic (gTLD) and country code (ccTLD) Top-Level Domain name system management, and root server system management functions. As a private-public partnership, ICANN is dedicated to preserving the operational stability of the Internet; to promoting competition; to achieving broad representation of global Internet communities; and to developing policy appropriate to its mission through bottom-up, consensus-based processes.

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Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."