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Statement Concerning Draft RIR-ICANN Agreement

For quite some time, the managements of ICANN and the Regional Internet Registries (APNIC, ARIN, and RIPE NCC) have been discussing the terms of a draft "Relationship Agreement" on matters of roles, responsibilities, and procedures relating to Internet Protocol (IP) address management and global IP address management policies. Recently they have completed these discussions and agreed on a draft agreement (posted here) that they believe accurately represents their relationships. This agreement would further formalize the existing working relationship between the RIRs and ICANN, which is set forth in the Memorandum of Understanding for the ICANN Address Supporting Organization (ASO MoU).

The draft Relationship Agreement is being posted for public comment prior to its consideration by the ICANN Board. It will also be the subject of the RIRs' solicitation of comments from their communities. The Regional Internet Registries have noted that ICANN's ongoing evolution and reform process may result in outcomes for ICANN that could affect on the ability of the parties to complete their commitments as documented in the draft agreement. Accordingly, consideration of this agreement will be coordinated with the ICANN evolution and reform process.

A web-based comment forum has been established to receive public comment on the draft Relationship Agreement.

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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."