WATCH: UN Secretary General’s message for World Press Freedom Day 2017

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls on leaders and citizens to counter misinformation, and appeals to end threats to journalists worldwide

MANILA, Philippines – The world observes World Press Freedom Day 2017 on Wednesday, May 3.

This year’s WPFD has the theme, “Critical Minds for Critical Times: Media’s role in advancing peaceful and inclusive societies.”

Antonio Guterres pictured May 14, 2014 in Geneva. Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

In this video message for this year’s WPFD, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls on leaders and citizens to counter misinformation, and appeals to end threats to journalists worldwide.

“A free press advances peace and justice for all,” Guterres emphasized.

Here is the full text of his message:

Journalists go to the most dangerous places to give voice to the voiceless.

Media workers suffer character assassination, sexual assault, detention, injuries and even death.

We need leaders to defend a free media. This is crucial to counter prevailing misinformation.

And we need everyone to stand for our right to truth.

On World Press Freedom Day, I call for an end to all crackdowns against journalists – because a free press advances peace and justice for all.

When we protect journalists, their words and pictures can change our world.

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