CONSPIRACY nuts are reportedly setting phone masts alight and targeting engineers after a bizarre claim 5G “radiation” caused the deadly coronavirus spread.
The theory originated last month after a video filmed at a US health conference claimed Africa was not as affected by the disease because it is “not a 5G region”.
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The myth was quickly debunked after the World Health Organisation confirmed there were thousands of Covid-19 cases in Africa.
The government has also confirmed there is “no evidence to suggest that 5G has anything to do with Covid-19”.
But the claims have still been doing the rounds on WhatsApp via a lengthy voice note – with phone masts now being set alight in the UK.
Engineers are now also being targeted with social media users encouraging each other to destroy the masts in a Stop 5G Facebook group.
Police and fire crews were scrambled to one inferno in Birmingham last night when a 70ft mast erupted in flames.
The cause of the fire is still being investigated but both emergency service was able to confirm the fire was deliberate at this stage.
Hundreds of people have commented on shocking videos of the blaze posted on the Facebook group.
One person wrote: “Good needs to be done everywhere evil domination is coming”.
Another said: “It is time to act now. Any 5g tower in your area burn it down! Collect people and stand and fight this. Act now before it’s too late!”
Others have posted pictures of masts near their homes, with users urging them to “destroy” it.
While one person in a separate group is keeping a “league” table for cities setting the masts on fire.
The group has now been forced to warn users not to attack engineers.
A post at the top of the site reads: “We have been notified by certain members of the public that some individuals in this group have decided to target telecoms workers, as they believe and claim them to be ‘criminals and genocidists’.
“You know who you are. If you continue to conduct yourselves like this you will be banned from this group.”
The 5G coronavirus theory thought to have gained popularity last month when a YouTube video supporting the claims was heavily criticised for spreading bogus information during a very real crisis.
Those working in the sector say there is “quite a big collective” trying to stop 5G from being rolled out across the UK.
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One telecoms engineer, who didn’t wish to be named, said: “There are Facebook groups posting videos of the masts being set on fire and people encouraging others to do the same.
“Wuhan was a test bed for the 5G rollout but is a dumbfounded connection.”
Mobile UK, who represent networks EE, 02, Three and Vodafone, confirmed to The Sun Online some workers had been abused over the false claims.
They said in a statement: “During this challenging situation, it is concerning that certain groups are using the COVID-19 pandemic to spread false rumours and theories about the safety of 5G technologies.
“More worryingly some people are also abusing our key workers and making threats to damage infrastructure under the pretence of claims about 5G.
“This is not acceptable and only impacts on our ability as an industry to maintain the resilience and operational capacity of the networks to support mass home working and critical connectivity to the emergency services, vulnerable consumers and hospitals.
“The theories are baseless and are not grounded in accepted scientific theory.
“The mobile industry is putting 100% of its effort into ensuring that the UK remains connected and our workers and the mobile operators have rightly been recognised by the Government as key to the national effort.”