New York, June 18 (QNA) - Hate speech incites violence, undermines diversity and social cohesion and 'threatens the common values and principles that bind us together,' the UN chief said in his message for the first-ever International Day for Countering Hate Speech.
"It promotes racism, xenophobia and misogyny; it dehumanizes individuals and communities; and it has a serious impact on our efforts to promote peace and security, human rights, and sustainable development," underscored Secretary-General Ant?nio Guterres.
He explained that words can be weaponized and cause physical harm.
The escalation from hate speech to violence, has played a significant role in the most horrific and tragic crimes of the modern age, from the antisemitism driving the Holocaust, to the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, he said.
"The internet and social media have turbocharged hate speech, enabling it to spread like wildfire across borders," added the UN chief.
The spread of hate speech against minorities during the COVID-19 pandemic has further shown that many societies are highly vulnerable to the stigma, discrimination and conspiracies it promotes.
In response to this growing threat, three years ago, Guterres launched the UN Strategy and Plan of Action on Hate Speech - a new framework to support Member States in countering the scourge, while also managing to respect freedom of expression and opinion.
It was undertaken in collaboration with civil society, media, technology companies and social media platforms. (QNA)
18 June 2022
UN Secretary-General Calls for Response to Growing Threat of Hate Speech
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