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Factcheck: Russian President did not say Pakistan is a graveyard for Pakistanis

The quote went viral on all social media platforms, especially Twitter. The post was shared thousands of times and got mixed reactions from Pakistanis, with many agreeing with the purported statement made by the Russian President and a few criticizing him for foreign interference.

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A comment on Pakistani politics attributed to Russian President Vladimir Putin has turned out to be fake. The quote went viral back in 2019 when the former prime minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, left for London 20 days after being released on bail on a health plea. According to the reports, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that “Pakistan is just a cemetery for Pakistanis”.

The Russian President added, “When a Pakistani becomes rich, his bank accounts are in Switzerland. He travels to London/America for Medical treatment. He invests in UK/Dubai. He buys from Dubai. He consumes Chinese. He prays in Rome or Mecca. his children study in Europe. He travels to Canada, USA, Europe for tourism. If he die, he will be buried in his native country of Pakistan. Pakistan is just a cemetery for Pakistanis. How could a cemetery be developed?”

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The quote went viral on all social media platforms, especially Twitter. The post was shared thousands of times and got mixed reactions from Pakistanis, with many agreeing with the purported statement made by the Russian President and a few criticizing him for foreign interference. The Pakistan Ministry of Information, however, failed to make comments on the false claims and did not rubbish the news as being misleading. Netizens also took the opportunity to criticize the government for lax control over money laundering and the lack of business opportunities in the country. 

Boomlive found out that the quote was fake. Different variations of the hoax message were also circulated on social media. Moreover, no credible media outlet had shared the news. Even the Russian state-controlled media outlet did not post any such news. If Putin had made such a statement publicly, it would have been reported globally. Additionally, on searching with the same text, other versions of the same quote with only “Pakistan” replaced by some other countries’ names were found.

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One such post about Africa was also being circulated on social media. It was purported that Russian President Vladimir said that “Ghana is a graveyard for Ghanaians ‘. However, shortly after reports emerged on social media, the official Facebook page of the Ministry of Information – Ghana, on December 13, 2018, refuted the fake page and claim.