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APTLD and ICANN Join Forces in Dubai

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21 January 2019

Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced that the 2019 Middle East DNS Forum (MEDNSF) will be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The event, hosted by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) of the UAE, will take place from 20-21 February. This will be the second time that Dubai has hosted the MEDNSF.

The sixth MEDNSF will feature international and regional field experts and industry stakeholders who will discuss the latest developments and issues in the global and regional domain marketplace. The forum will also have panel discussions and presentations on topics of interest to the regional community in an effort to strengthen the DNS industry in the Middle East.

Some of the key topics of this year’s program are:

• Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) and Universal Acceptance (UA) with a focus on domain names and email addresses in Arabic script.
The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
New generic top-level domains (gTLDs) and future expansion.
DNS operations and security.
Case studies on emerging trends in the DNS.

Cherine Chalaby, ICANN Board Chair, will be in attendance along with leading regional and global experts from the technical, policy, and legal fields of the DNS industry.

For the first time, the MEDNSF will be held in conjunction with another regional event – the 75th Meeting of the Asia Pacific Top-Level Domain Association (APTLD75). The collaboration will allow participants to attend sessions from both events including joint sessions. This initiative was developed from the Middle East DNS Forum Assessment Survey that was distributed to the regional ICANN community in May 2018. Among the survey results was the suggestion to organize the forum in conjunction with similar events in the region to help maximize attendance and value.

Information and Registration

Event information including the program, speakers, and logistics is available at the forum’s website.
Registration is available here, and is open to everyone.
Remote participation will be made available here.
For more information or inquiries, please email meac.swg@icann.org.


The Middle East DNS Forum (MEDNSF) was created to help support the regional domain name industry. This initiative was part of ICANN’s Engagement Strategy in the Middle East for 2013-2016 [PDF, 983 KB], which was released by the regional community in 2013. The forum is aimed at increasing regional stakeholders’ knowledge of the Domain Name System. Since its inception in 2014, the Middle East DNSForum has been held in the UAE (2014), Jordan (2015), Tunisia (2016), Egypt (2017), and Turkey (2018).

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