The Internet's key oversight agency has quietly authorized Iraq's new government to manage its own domain name, allowing for the restoration of Internet addresses ending in ''.iq.''
The suffix had been in limbo after the 2002 federal indictment of the Texas-based company that was running it on charges of funneling money to a member of the Islamic extremist group Hamas.
InfoCom Corp., which sold computers and Web services in the Middle East and got the ''.iq'' assignment in 1997, was convicted in April along with its chief executive and two brothers.
The board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which oversees top-level domains, unanimously approved transferring the ''.iq'' name to Iraq's telecommunications regulator on July 28.
The decision to award ''.iq'' came during a private teleconference call among ICANN board members. The approved resolution was quietly posted this week on an inside ICANN Web page -- two clicks from the home page -- and got little attention until the Web journal Lextext remarked on it Thursday."