News Verification

A collection of debunks and investigations into claims circulating online.

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Old photos of helicopter wreckage do not show 'Balochistan crash in 2022'

Old photos of helicopter wreckage do not show 'Balochistan crash in 2022' After six Pakistan servicemen including a senior commander were killed in a helicopter crash on August 1, Facebook posts shared photos of wreckage that they claimed showed the aftermath of the disaster. However, the photos are old; one was taken after a deadly accident in Pakistan in December 2021 and the others were taken following separate crashes in Afghanistan in May and June 2011. “An army helicopter has crashed in

This video has circulated since 2021 in reports of a fire at the Afghanistan-Iran border

This video has circulated since 2021 in reports of a fire at the Afghanistan-Iran border Social media users have shared a video they claim shows a fire that broke out at a Pakistani power plant in July 2022. However, the video -- viewed tens of thousands of times -- has been shared in a false context; it has circulated since 2021 in reports about a blaze at Afghanistan's largest trade crossing with Iran, which destroyed hundreds of oil and gas tankers and caused millions of dollars of damage.

Video shows storm over the US in 2018, not Pakistan in 2022

Video shows storm over the US in 2018, not Pakistan in 2022 After monsoon rains battered Pakistan in July 2022, social media posts shared a video they claimed shows a microburst over the South Asian nation's largest city Karachi. But the video -- viewed tens of thousands of times -- has been shared in a false context. It actually shows a microburst over the US state of Arizona in 2018. The 24-second clip was shared here on Facebook on July 11, 2022, where it has been viewed more than 60,000 ti

Yemeni boy's photo falsely shared with claim it shows 'child rescued after Afghanistan quake'

Yemeni boy's photo falsely shared with claim it shows 'child rescued after Afghanistan quake' A photo of a boy has been shared hundreds of times in multiple Pakistani social media posts that claim he was rescued from the rubble of a deadly earthquake that struck Afghanistan in June 2022. However, the photo has been shared in a false context; it has circulated online since 2015 in reports about the Yemen conflict. The photographer told AFP he took the image in Yemen in 2015, after Houthi rebels

Video shows dead livestock after torrential rains in Saudi Arabia in 2020 -- not Pakistan in 2022

Video shows dead livestock after torrential rains in Saudi Arabia in 2020 -- not Pakistan in 2022 A video has been viewed thousands of times in social media posts claiming it shows livestock that drowned in Pakistan after the South Asian nation was battered by monsoon rains in July 2022. However, the video has been shared in a false context; it has circulated since 2020 in reports about livestock killed in floods in northern Saudi Arabia. The 21-second clip was shared here on Facebook on July

Posts share old video of lodgings for hajj pilgrims as 'provided by Pakistan government in 2022'

Posts share old video of lodgings for hajj pilgrims as 'provided by Pakistan government in 2022' As thousands of Pakistani Muslims made the journey to Saudi Arabia for the annual hajj pilgrimage in July 2022, a video was viewed thousands of times in social media posts that claimed it shows pilgrims criticising the current Pakistan government for housing them in "terrible" conditions. However, the video has been shared in a misleading context. It has circulated since August 2019 in posts that cr

This video has circulated since 2021 in reports about Taliban after US Afghan exit

This video has circulated since 2021 in reports about Taliban after US Afghan exit A video of people prostrating has been viewed more than a thousand times in social media posts that claim it shows crowds mourning following an earthquake that struck eastern Afghanistan in June 2022. However, the claim is false; the video has circulated since September 2021 in reports about the Taliban celebrating after the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. The claim was shared here on Facebook on June 23, 2022.

This photo shows quake-damaged road in Pakistan in 2019, not Afghanistan in 2022

This photo shows quake-damaged road in Pakistan in 2019, not Afghanistan in 2022 A photo of a damaged road has been shared thousands of times in multiple Facebook posts that claim it shows the aftermath of a powerful earthquake that struck Afghanistan in June 2022. However, the claim is false; the photo actually shows a road damaged by a major earthquake in Pakistan-administered Kashmir in September 2019. A photo showing people standing over a severely damaged road was posted on Facebook on Ju

Photo of 2015 Charlie Hebdo protest doctored to add call for Nupur Sharma's arrest

Photo of 2015 Charlie Hebdo protest doctored to add call for Nupur Sharma's arrest An image has been shared over a thousand times by Pakistani social media users that claim it shows Muslims in Russia protesting over controversial remarks about the Prophet Mohammed by an official from India's Hindu nationalist ruling party. However, the picture has been doctored to include references to the official; the original shows a 2015 protest against French magazine Charlie Hebdo for publishing cartoons

Video shows birthday celebration in Yemen for Prophet Mohammed -- not protest in India

Video shows birthday celebration in Yemen for Prophet Mohammed -- not protest in India A video has been viewed thousands of times in Facebook posts that claim it shows millions of Muslims taking to the streets in India to protest over remarks made by a ruling party official that were seen as insulting to the Prophet Mohammed. However, the video actually shows a birthday celebration for the prophet held in Yemen in 2019, and its audio is from a Hezbollah leader's speech in 2012 that warned of "d

Posts misrepresent photo of ex-Pakistan PM Khan greeting Erdogan in Pakistan

Two photos have circulated online in social media posts that claim Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan personally greeted Pakistan's former premier Imran Khan at the airport when he visited Turkey, while the current Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was greeted by the Turkish defence minister. The posts -- shared hundreds of times -- are misleading. While the photo of Sharif has been shared in the correct context, the photo of Khan shows him greeting Erdogan in Pakistan, not Turkey, in

Old video of weeping Pakistan minister doctored to add 'thief' chant

Old video of weeping Pakistan minister doctored to add 'thief' chant A video viewed millions of times in Facebook and TikTok posts appears to show Pakistan's Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb weeping while a crowd chants "thief" and "traitor" at her. The posts claim the footage was taken at a rally in May 2022 by Aurangzeb's Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) party. However, the video has been doctored to add the chants. The original clip was filmed in 2018 and shows Aurangzeb's reactio

Footage has circulated since 2021 in posts about a protest by Pakistani civil servants

Footage has circulated since 2021 in posts about a protest by Pakistani civil servants Footage has been viewed tens of thousands of times in social media posts that claim it shows Pakistan's capital Islamabad blanketed in tear gas in May 2022. The posts spread online after clashes between police and supporters of the country's ousted prime minister Imran Khan in the capital and other cities. However, the footage has been shared in a false context. It has circulated online since at least Februar

These photos show wildfires in the United States and Australia, not Pakistan

These photos show wildfires in the United States and Australia, not Pakistan Four images have been shared hundreds of times in social media posts that claim they show a raging forest fire in Pakistan's southwestern Balochistan province in May 2022. Some of the posts were shared by Pakistani politicians and journalists. However, the pictures have been shared in a false context. They actually show wildfires in the United States and a bushfire in Australia. Three images of burning trees were post

This video shows a bushfire in Australia, not a forest fire in Pakistan

This video shows a bushfire in Australia, not a forest fire in Pakistan A video showing plumes of smoke rising from burning trees has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times in posts that claim it was filmed in a forest in Pakistan. Although a huge fire broke out in a large pine nut forest in Pakistan's southwestern province of Balochistan in May 2022, the video has been shared in a false context. The footage shows a bushfire in Australia in December 2019, when the country was ravaged by cat

This video has been doctored to include chants against ex-Pakistan PM Imran Khan

This video has been doctored to include chants against ex-Pakistan PM Imran Khan A video has been viewed tens of thousands of times in multiple social posts that claim it shows a crowd telling former Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan to go away when he was giving a speech in May 2022. The video, however, has been edited to add anti-Khan chants. The audio matches protesters' chants in a video of a rally against Khan in the Pakistani city of Lahore in March 2022, weeks before he was deposed. T

This photo was shot in the Philippines and does not show a rally for ousted Pakistan PM Imran Khan

This photo was shot in the Philippines and does not show a rally for ousted Pakistan PM Imran Khan After a rally by Pakistan's ousted leader Imran Khan in the northeastern city of Sialkot, a photo was shared hundreds of times on social media alongside a claim it shows a massive crowd at the event. However, the photo has been shared in a false context; it was shot in the Philippines and has circulated in reports about an election rally in March 2022 -- two months before Khan's Sialkot rally. Th

Photo of US traffic edited to add illustration of Vladimir Putin with Imran Khan

Photo of US traffic edited to add illustration of Vladimir Putin with Imran Khan An image appearing to show an illustration of Russian President Vladimir Putin with Pakistan's ousted leader Imran Khan on the back of a truck has been shared thousands of times in social media posts that claim it was taken in Russia. However, the photo has been altered to add the illustration to the truck, and it was originally taken in the United States. The image was posted here on Twitter on May 7, 2022. It a

London bus ad with Pakistan founder is from publicity campaign before Imran Khan became PM

London bus ad with Pakistan founder is from publicity campaign before Imran Khan became PM Social media posts shared thousands of times criticise Pakistan's Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for having a picture of himself printed on the side of a London bus. They contrast this with an illustration of Pakistan's founder that purportedly featured on a bus during the tenure of his predecessor Imran Khan. However, while Sharif's image genuinely appeared on London buses after he came to power in April

Old arrest video misleadingly linked to Pakistan leader's Saudi visit

A video has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times in posts that claim it shows activists from Pakistan’s main opposition party being arrested by Saudi police. The clip circulated online after Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was heckled during a visit to the Prophet's Mosque in Medina. However, the video has been shared in a misleading context; it predates Sharif's visit by more than one year. It actually shows Pakistan nationals arrested on suspicion of running digital scams in the S
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