May 3, 2020, 12:55 PM
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News Code: 83773764
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UN chief: Free press, antidote for infodemic

Tehran, May 3, IRNA – Free press amid coronavirus pandemic and of course in time of other crises can play the role of antidote for infodemic by releasing reliable, scientific and truth-based news, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said marking the World Press Freedom Day.

May 3 is marked as World Press Freedom Day.

It was first named as ‘World Press Freedom Day’ upon UNESCO’S initiative in 1993 during the 48th UN General Assembly meeting to prepare an opportunity for raining challenges threatening freedom of press and journalists’ security and to find suitable solutions.

The commemoration of the ‘World Press Freedom Day’ is aimed at reminding the governments of the importance of compliance with commitment with regard to independence of press and media and the right to freely publish the fact.

It will also pave the way for commemorating the infrastructural principles of press freedom, evaluating the condition of press freedom in the world, defending media against aggression and paying homage to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of their duties.

The ‘World Press Freedom Day’ conference was scheduled to be held on April 22-24 in Hague but it was postponed due to the outbreak of coronavirus.

UN Secretary General in a video message said “The press provides the antidote: verified, scientific, fact-based news and analysis.”

As the COVID-19 crisis has deepened, both the UN chief and the World Health Organization (WHO) have been focused on countering the COVID-19 “infodemic”.

Meanwhile, David Kaye, the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression said: “At a time when disease outbreaks spread through detention facilities, detention’s cruelty is exposed, imposing an additionally excessive punishment that carries with it the risk of illness and death.”

“The criminalization of journalism must end. That can start with releasing journalists from detention as a matter of urgency,” he added.

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