VIENNA / COVID-19 UN CLOSURE

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27-Mar-2020 00:04:24
Since Monday (16 Mar) the Vienna International Centre, one of the four global headquarters of the United Nations, has been closed as a COVID-19 prevention measure. Some 5,000 personnel usually based at the complex are now working remotely on issues ranging from nuclear safety and security to fighting international cybercrime. UNIS VIENNA / FILE


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STORY: VIENNA / COVID-19 UN CLOSURE
TRT: 4:24
SOURCE: UNIS VIENNA / FILE
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / GERMAN / NATS

DATELINE: 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA / FILE

SHOTLIST:

UNIS VIENNA - 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

1. Wide shot, exterior Vienna International Centre (VIC)
2. Wide shot, entrance to VIC
3. Wide shot, flags flying on VIC Memorial Plaza
4. Wide shot, security officer on patrol with K9 unit dog
5. Med shot, cherry trees in bloom on the VIC Memorial Plaza
6. Wide shot, empty VIC corridor leading to UN and UNIDO offices
7. Close up, sign inside the VIC with information on COVID-19 closing
8. Wide shot, empty VIC corridor
9. Med shot, empty VIC meeting room
10. Wide shot, empty VIC conference room
11. Pan right, empty VIC cafeteria
12. SOUNDBITE (English) Security Officer, UN Office at Vienna (UNOV):
“As you can see, I’m now in the cafeteria, and where you usually queue for twenty minutes to get some food, today is everything empty.”
13. Med shot, hand sanitizer and instruction poster on handwashing at the VIC
14. Med shot, COVID19 information for staff outside the VIC medical service
15. Med shot, hands using hand sanitizer
16. UPSOUND(German):
“This is going to take a little while, because you really need to do it five times, at least.”

FILE – CTBTO – DECEMBER 2019, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

16. Various shots, Operations Centre of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) before the VIC closure

UNIS VIENNA - 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

17. Med shot, empty meeting room at the VIC

IAEA - 25 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA


18. SOUNDBITE (English) Enrique Estrada Lobato, Nuclear Medicine Physician technical officer Nuclear Medicine and Diagnostic Imaging Section, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) - working from home
"I'm really proud of what we are achieving because having different tasks for groups, not only regular business as usual, but also to work with COVID-19 to support Member States on facing this outbreak."

UNIS VIENNA - 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

19. Med shot, empty office at the VIC

UNODC –24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

20. SOUNDBITE (English) Neil Walsh, Cybercrime expert, UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) - speaking from home
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a really fertile environment for cybercriminals to try and exploit us, and to attack us. Our networks are under attack, our devices are under attack. Cybercriminals are trying to sell fake alcohol hand sanitizers on the Internet, fake cures for the virus on the Internet.”

UNIS VIENNA - 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

21. Tilt up, exterior VIC office building

UNODC –24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

22. SOUNDBITE (English) Neil Walsh, Cybercrime expert, UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC):
“Just in the past few days, we’ve made sure that a cybercriminal couldn’t take advantage of selling face masks from one country to another that probably didn’t exist. And also we’re now helping all staff, and people around the world, to keep our kids safer online, to understand what the risks are, and minimize the harm that could come to them.”

UNIS VIENNA - 24 MARCH 2020, VIENNA, AUSTRIA

23. Wide shot, UN Vienna tour guides filming each other on the VIC Plaza
24. Wide shot, three tour guides walking down VIC corridor while maintaining distance
25. SOUNDBITE (English) Kateryna Bondareva , Tour Guide, UN Information Service Vienna:
“So for us of course it’s a big challenge, because our job is to give tours to people who want to see what the inside of the UN headquarters in Vienna looks like. So for now what we are trying to do is to move at least a part of that experience online, while the tour operations here in the VIC are suspended.”
26. Various shots, tour guides packing up material for video recording at home
27. Wide shot, tour guide getting on VIC elevator with material for home, doors closing
28. Wide shot, flags flying on VIC Memorial Plaza

STORYLINE:

Since Monday (16 Mar) the Vienna International Centre, one of the four global headquarters of the United Nations, has been closed as a COVID-19 prevention measure. Some 5,000 personnel usually based at the complex are now working remotely on issues ranging from nuclear safety and security to fighting international cybercrime.
Known in Austria as "UNO City", the UN complex serves as the headquarters of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and is home to a number of other organizations of the UN family like the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) or the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).

Only a small fraction of staff are still serving on site, secured by UN security.

More than 95 per cent of all Vienna International Centre staff are telecommuting. They have been told to adhere strictly to the Austrian Government's measures to flatten the transmission curve of COVID-19. Austria has been in ‘lockdown’ since 16 March, with measures currently in place until 13 April 2020.

As of 25 March, six cases of COVID-19 had been confirmed among Vienna International Centre personnel.

Standing in the complex’s deserted cafeteria, a UN security officer explains that over the course of a normal day thousands of people would come here for lunch or coffee.

Handwashing, social distancing and other personal prevention measures have become part of the routine for everyone who still needs to come to the building to work.

Meanwhile almost all the critical work usually done here has now shifted to people’s homes. All analysts working for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO)'s Operations Centre have moved offsite to remote locations, where they are carrying on monitoring the globe to make sure no nuclear test goes undetected.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has also re-organized to keep its work as the world's nuclear watchdog going. Beyond that the agency is helping countries to fight COVID-19, work that one of its staffers working from home says he is proud to contribute to. The IAEA is providing COVID-19 diagnostic kits, equipment and training in nuclear-derived virus detection techniques to countries requesting assistance.

Setting up home offices for thousands of workers is a challenge for any organization. The Vienna-based UN Office for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is taking a leading role in flagging some real dangers that may not be getting enough attention.

Cybercrime expert Neil Walsh warns that the COVID-19 pandemic has created a “really fertile environment for cybercriminals to try and exploit us, and to attack us”, saying that networks and devices are under attack. Children who are spending more time online while schools are closed in many countries may be more vulnerable than normal to sexual or financial exploitation by cybercriminals.

Walsh says that combatting these types of cybercrime is precisely what UNODC is there for, helping countries to keep online fraudsters from selling fake hand sanitizers or non-existent face masks, and or plotting to take hospitals offline with ransomware.

With the building closed, the UN is looking at alternative ways to keep the public informed about the work it is doing. UN tour guides usually spend their days taking visitors around the premises for an immersive look at what goes on inside the United Nations. Guided tours operate at all four UN headquarters in New York, Geneva, Vienna and Nairobi. All have been suspended as a COVID-19 prevention measure.

UN Vienna tour guide Kateryna Bondareva says this presents a “big challenge”, and that in Vienna efforts are underway to move at least part of the experience online while tour operations onsite are suspended.

This week tour guides gathered up props and materials to help them film for virtual tours at home – certainly a departure from how they thought they would be working this spring.
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UNIS VIENNA
Alternate Title
unifeed200327a
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2542125