2:08 AM U.N. chief warns pandemic is “fast becoming a human rights crisis” United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says the coronavirus pandemic is “a human crisis that is fast becoming a human rights crisis.” He warned that using the pandemic to erode human rights would be “unacceptable.”The U.N. chief said in a video message Thursday that there is discrimination in the delivery of public services to tackle COVID-19 and there are “structural inequalities that impede access to them.” Guterres said the pandemic has also seen “disproportionate effects on certain communities, the rise of hate speech, the targeting of vulnerable groups, and the risks of heavy-handed security responses undermining the health response.” And he noted that with “rising ethno-nationalism, populism, authoritarianism and a pushback against human rights in some countries, the crisis can provide a pretext to adopt repressive measures for purposes unrelated to the pandemic. This is unacceptable.” The secretary-general didn’t name any countries or parties but stressed that governments must be “transparent, responsive and accountable” and that press freedom, civil society organizations, the private sector and “civic space” are essential. He stressed that any emergency measures – including states of emergency – must be “legal, proportionate, necessary and

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