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NT Chief Minister takes aim at international trolls over COVID-19 misinformation

The Northern Territory‘s Chief Minister has taken aim at “international trolls”, saying 99 per cent of misinformation about the region’s COVID-19 response is from online actors.

Michael Gunner today implored the online trolls to “get a life” and debunked theories that ADF members in the territory are carrying weapons.

“I urge people not to worry about the insane, unhinged stuff that’s spreading online and that overwhelming come from people who don’t live here and know nothing about us,” he said.

NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner. (Nine)

“99.99 per cent of the BS that’s flying around the internet about the territory is coming from flogs outside the territory, mostly America, Canada and the UK.

“People who have nothing better to do than make up lies about us because their own lives are so small and so sad.

“We don’t need to listen to them, listen instead of the Traditional Owners from yesterday — ‘we are in lockdown because we’re in the biggest fight of our lives’.”

He said the COVID-19 measures are about attempting to protect the “oldest living culture on the planet”.

People in the NT queuing for COVID-19 testing in Katherine .
People in the NT queuing for COVID-19 testing in Katherine . (Krystle Wright)

“We have tens of thousands of years of history and lore, custom and song to keep alive,” he said.

“And if anyone thinks we’re going to be distracted or intimidated by a tin hat-wearing tosser sitting in their parents’ basement in Florida, then they don’t know Territorians.”

One new COVID-19 case in NT

The Northern Territory today recorded one new COVID-19 case, taking the total number of infections attributed to the Katherine cluster to 52.

The new case is a teenager from Binjari who was previously identified as a close contact.

Mr Gunner said it is unlikely the teen was infectious in the community.

The total number of infections attributed to the Katherine cluster stands at 52.
The total number of infections attributed to the Katherine cluster stands at 52. (Krystle Wright)

“This shows us the hard lockdown is working and that caring for close contacts in quarantine is working,” he said.

“There continues to be positive wastewater catchment in Katherine but this is where the children, the positive cases, were living and the signal strength is weaker so we’re pretty happy with that.”

Meanwhile, the community of Rockhole in the Northern Territory will leave hard lockdown following all wastewater and personal COVID-19 tests returning negative results.

Rockhole will now move to an “ordinary” lockdown, meaning they can leave home for five different essential reasons.

Under no circumstances can Rockhole residents enter the nearby Binjari community.

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