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Social media bosses told to crack down on conspiracies as 5G masts torched

Social media bosses will be ordered to crack down on fake news and “crazed” conspiracy theories about Covid-19 after two 5G masts went up in flames.

Police and firefighters were called to a blazing mobile tower off the M57 near Liverpool on Friday after bogus claims linking the technology with the virus.

It came after a fire at a 70ft mast in the Sparkhill area of Birmingham on Thursday.

Both incidents came amid bizarre suggestions 5G is driving the pandemic.

Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson said: “I’ve reported a tweet to police which said ‘If you don’t halt them [the masts] Joe, we will’.”

The Government has rubbished any connection with coronavirus (Image: Birmz Is Grime / SWNS)

Culture Secretary James Dowden will now tell Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Google and YouTube to curb conspiracy theories, bogus scientific reports and scams relating to coronavirus.

A spokesman said: “We are calling on tech firms to prevent this nonsense spreading.

“There is absolutely no evidence of a link between 5G and coronavirus.”

There are also fears damage to masts will hit mercy crews ­trying to reach patients.

Professor Adam Finn, of University of Bristol, said: “The connections these networks give are one of the most important tools in our response to the epidemic.”

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Trade body Mobile UK said the false rumours about 5G were “concerning” and people backing claims were slammed.

One person shared an article on “the negative effects of 5G” on the pandemic with followers.

And another posted online: “Doctors and WHO ask Governments to halt roll out of 5G. Here’s why!!”

Dr Michael Head, a global health expert at University of Southampton, said those “fanning the flames of conspiracy theorists should be ashamed”.

There were no signs of foul play on Friday and the cause of Thursday’s fire is a mystery.


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