Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has called upon the UN secretary general to establish an inter-agency task force for combating and enhancing public awareness about disinformation to build societal resistance and resilience against it.
Addressing a virtual meeting of the Group of Friends on Thursday, he also urged the UN to appoint a focal person on disinformation for interactions with member states, the private media and online companies and other stakeholders.
Foreign Minister @BBhuttoZardari message for the meeting of “Group of Friends to Counter Disinformation for the Promotion & Protection of Human Rights & Fundamental Freedoms” @ForeignOfficePk #GoFCounteringDisinformation #APPNews https://t.co/pEe1hRgJGY
— APP 🇵🇰 (@appcsocialmedia) June 23, 2022
The foreign minister urged the international community to enhance the capacity of the governments and their relevant institutions to detect, analyse and expose disinformation, reported Radio Pakistan.
FM Bilawal said financial and technical support should be extended to national and international researchers, and institutions which are involved in detecting disinformation.
Pakistan successfully convenes first meeting of Group of Friends on Countering Disinformation as a follow-up to the implementation of a landmark resolution 76/227, focused on the global approaches to #CounteringDisinformation.
FM 🇵🇰 @BBhuttoZardari delivered keynote address!! pic.twitter.com/RPcdTuv2kZ
— Permanent Mission of Pakistan to UN, NY (@PakistanUN_NY) June 23, 2022
He said the UN Department of Information can play a critical role in this regard, stressing that concrete international efforts can help expose and dismantle disinformation networks.
He also called for concerted efforts through cooperation to minimise the negative impacts of disinformation on human rights and relations between community and states.
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The foreign minister suggested that the UN human rights mechanism should highlight the negative impact of disinformation.
He urged the UN to develop rules, standards and regulations for adherence by the private sector, social media companies and other non-governmental actors.
Bilawal said the UN can develop a compendium of "best practices" and guidelines for actions, including through the use of advanced technologies, such as artificial intelligence to serve as guidelines for national and international actions.
He said the exponential proliferation of disinformation, especially through online platforms and social media, has spread social discord and fostered hate speech, racism, discrimination, xenophobia and Islamophobia.