FM Bilawal urges UN to set up task force to tackle global propaganda

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Thursday urged the United Nations to set up an inter-agency task force to combat propaganda, which can hold regular talks with member states and other stakeholders.

Delivering a virtual address at a meeting of a group of friends on combating disinformation for promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, Bilawal stressed that the world “has to combat misinformation online and offline in public”. There should be an international plan for and private domain”.

Sharing his suggestions to tackle this menace, Bilawal called for raising public awareness and building social resistance and resilience against propaganda through information campaigns promoted by member states and the United Nations.

He also stressed the need for capacity building of governments and their respective institutions to detect, analyze and expose disinformation and their networks.

“The United Nations and its agencies must specifically build the capacity of Member States, especially developing countries, to analyze and fact-check and filter information online.”

Bilawal said that financial and technical assistance should be given to national and international researchers as well as institutions involved in fighting disinformation.

He said that the Information Department of the United Nations can play an important role in this context.

The External Affairs Minister said that the world should make a focused effort through cooperation to reduce the negative impact of propaganda on human rights, and reduce ties between communities and states by building firewalls against false information.

He said that the United Nations should adopt guidelines for actions, including the use of advanced technology such as artificial intelligence, to act as a driving force for national and international actions.

He also proposed that the United Nations should develop rules and regulations in this regard to be followed by the private sector, social media companies and other non-governmental actors.