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UN chief says intl co-op on digital technology essential to help defeat COVID-19

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-05-17 07:51
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is seen on a video screen. [Photo/Agencies]

UNITED NATIONS - United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Saturday that international cooperation on digital technology is essential to help defeat COVID-19.

In a video message marking the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, which falls on May 17 annually, the UN chief said that "World Telecommunication and Information Society Day reminds us that international cooperation on digital technology is essential to help defeat COVID-19 and achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development."

"Information technology can be a beacon of hope, allowing billions of people around the world to connect," said Guterres.

"During the COVID-19 pandemic, these connections - with loved ones, with schools and colleges, with workplaces, with healthcare professionals and essential supplies - are more important than ever," the secretary-general added.

"The International Telecommunication Union continues to work with the information and communication technology community and UN agencies to help manage and end this crisis, and recover better," he said.

"New technologies, from 5G and big data to cloud computing and artificial intelligence, are powerful tools to tackle the world's most pressing challenges, including the pandemic," the UN chief said, adding that "leaving no one behind means leaving no one offline."

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