António Guterres (UN Secretary-General) video message on COVID-19 and misinformation
As the world fights the deadly COVID-19 pandemic – the most challenging crisis we have faced since the Second World War – we are also seeing another epidemic — a dangerous epidemic of misinformation.
Around the world, people are scared. They want to know what to do and where to turn for advice.
This is a time for science and solidarity.
Yet the global ‘misinfo-demic’ is spreading.
Harmful health advice and snake-oil solutions are proliferating.
Falsehoods are filling the airwaves.
Wild conspiracy theories are infecting the Internet.
Hatred is going viral, stigmatizing and vilifying people and groups.
The world must unite against this disease, too.
The vaccine is trust.
First, trust in science.
I salute the journalists and others fact-checking the mountain of misleading stories and social media posts.
Social media companies must do more to root out hate and harmful assertions about COVID-19.
Second, trust in institutions — grounded in responsive, responsible, evidence-based governance and leadership.
And trust in each other. Mutual respect and upholding human rights must be our compass in navigating this crisis.
Together, let’s reject the lies and nonsense out there.
Today I am announcing a new United Nations Communications Response initiative to flood the Internet with facts and science while countering the growing scourge of misinformation — a poison that is putting even more lives at risk.
With common cause for common sense and facts, we can defeat COVID-19 — and build a healthier, more equitable, just and resilient world.
COVID-19 Response United Nations Website: https://www.un.org/en/coronavirus
In This Story: António Guterres
António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres GCC GCL is a Portuguese politician and diplomat serving as the ninth secretary-general of the United Nations. A member of the Portuguese Socialist Party, he served as prime minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002.
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The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a persistent new cough (non productive, dry)
- a high temperature (e.g. head feels warm to the touch)
- shortness of breath (if this is abnormal for the individual, or increased)
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The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and security.
At its founding, the UN had 51 member states; with the addition of South Sudan in 2011, membership is now 193, representing almost all of the world’s sovereign states.
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A vaccine is a biological preparation that provides active acquired immunity to a particular infectious disease. A vaccine typically contains an agent that resembles a disease-causing microorganism and is often made from weakened or killed forms of the microbe, its toxins, or one of its surface proteins.