Qatar affirmed the importance of countries enhancing communication and developing a media strategy to provide reliable information to the public as part of their efforts to tackle the pandemic.
This came in the speech delivered by the Second Secretary of the Permanent Mission of the State of Qatar to the United Nations (UN) Office in Geneva Mohamed Abdullah al-Buainain during the Interactive Dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression.
Al-Buainain thanked David Kaye for his report submitted to the Council at this session, and said, “We agree with him that facilitating access to information would encourage the strengthening of health, life and autonomy, and that the restrictions imposed must meet the criteria of legality, necessity and proportionality.”
He also affirmed at the same time the importance of countries, as part of their efforts to tackle epidemics, enhancing communication and developing a media strategy to provide reliable information to the public, as indicated by the relevant guidelines of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Al-Buainain said that Qatar in this regard has formed, in the framework of its efforts to address the Covid-19 pandemic, a Supreme Committee for Crisis Management to deal with information and data related to the precautionary measures to address the spread of the virus, and the measures and decisions taken at the national level to confront this pandemic and mitigate its health, economic and social impacts. He pointed out that the committees officials are keen to be at a high level of transparency, professionalism and credibility in issuing decisions and announcing facts and statistics to the public, by holding periodic press conferences to provide briefings, answer questions and issue statements and directives in line with relevant international standards and guidelines.
This led to the committee’s success in reassuring public opinion and society and gaining their trust, he added.
Al-Buainain also noted the committee’s keenness to communicate with representatives of diplomatic missions and international organisations, clarify the preventive measures taken to address the pandemic, listen to their needs and concerns and try to find solutions for any difficulties they face.
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