British Set Telephone Poles on Fire over 5G and Coronavirus Link Conspiracy

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(— April 9, 2020) —  Multiple phone poles have been set on fire and Vodaphone UK technicians were abused in a series of incidents in several cities in the UK.

After photos of the pillars set ablaze were posted on social networks, providers pointed out that the spread of rumors of 5G technology being responsible for the spread of the coronavirus was “troubling.”

The poles were set on fire in Sparkhill, Birmingham, and Melling, the BBC reports. 
At least one tower in Birmingham, operated by EE, doesn’t even provide 5G services but was still set on fire, the police said. 
The BBC’s disinformation team said the video seems to be authentic.

The Department for Digital Technology, Culture, Media and Sport has announced that they are aware that inaccurate information about 5G technology is being disseminated on the Internet.

“There is absolutely no credible evidence” of a link, while trade body Mobile UK said such rumors and conspiracy theories were “concerning,” the Department said.

Allegedly, Facebook removed a page showing photos of 5G transmitting towers in a blaze to avoid inspiring others to do the same, but many news agencies shared photos of the telephone towers in flames.

Mobile UK said that besides threatening to damage infrastructure due to false claims about 5G technology, it is even more concerning that some people were abusing its workers.

“I’m absolutely outraged and disgusted that people would be taking action against the infrastructure we need to tackle this emergency,” the NHS Director Stephen Powis told the press conference.

The British officials said the conspiracy theory that 5G telecommunications network repeaters also play a role in the spread of the new corona virus is false news.

“It’s just nonsense, and even more dangerous,” Michael Gove, a minister in the British government and right-wing prime minister of Boris Johnson, replied to a journalistic question about the theory.

Officials explain that 5G technology is not harming the general population. While it uses different radio frequencies to its predecessors, the waveband involved is still “non-ionizing”, which means that it lacks the energy to cause any damage to the human body.