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Busted: Fake News and Propaganda

Rafidi

Rafidi

Legendary Member
This thread is for news outlets caught red handed in the act of spreading propaganda, false reports and fake news.

A few days ago on Friday 19th June 2020, Kataeb.org published the below claim/report on an alleged foiled attack by Hezballah on the posh areas of Lagos, Nigeria through the arrest of a named Nigerian Shia man in Sudan referred to as "Hezballah leader", who was allegedly recruited by Hezballah while he was in Iran:

Hezbollah Leader Captured in Lagos Operation

A planned operation by Hezbollah in Ikoyi and Lekki areas of Lagos was foiled yesterday.

A planned operation by Hezbollah in Ikoyi and Lekki areas of Lagos was foiled yesterday with the arrest of the Nigerian coordinator, Ali Mohamed El-Hassan, by INTERPOL in Sudan.

NewsmakersNG exclusively gathered that security agents arrested El-Hassan at the zero-hour of a major operation.

According to sources in the intelligence community, El-Hassan, a Nigerian citizen, was recruited by Hezbollah in 2011, at a religion conference in Tehran, the capital city of Iran.

He was later trained in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and recently operated as undercover for UNIT-400, the special forces unit of the Quds Force.

He was found to have also used a fake passport of Sudan to operate.

El-Hassan lives in Ikoyi, Lagos.

Founded in the early 1980s, Hezbollah which literally means Party of Allah is a Shia Islamist militant group based in Lebanon. It is considered as one of the richest groups on the US terrorist list, with an estimated $500million in financial assets.

According to Wikipedia, it’s paramilitary wing is the Jihad Council, and its political wing is the Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc party in the Lebanese parliament. Since the death of Abbas al-Musawi in 1992, the group has been headed by Hassan Nasrallah, its Secretary-General. The organization or its military wing are considered terrorist organizations in 18 countries, the Arab League and the European Union.

In 2013, Nigerian security agents uncovered a stash of heavy weapons after the arrest of three Lebanese found to be members of Hezbollah in northern Nigeria.

They were arrested during raids on their residences between May 16 and May 28, 2013, in Kano.

Security agents revealed that a raid on the residence of one of the Lebanese uncovered 11 60 mm anti-tank weapons, four anti-tank landmines, two rounds of ammunition for a 122 mm artillery gun, 21 rocket-propelled grenades, 17 AK-47s with more than 11,000 bullets and some dynamite.

The three men later charged, by the state security service, were identified as Mustapha Fawaz, Abdallah Tahini, and Talal Ahmad Roda, the owners of Amigo Supermarket and Wonderland Amusement Park in Abuja. They were arraigned on 15-counts of terrorism-related acts, trafficking weapons and money laundering, but they pleaded not guilty.

The Federal High Court in Abuja later cleared two of the suspects, but found Roda guilty of conspiracy. He was sentenced to life imprisonment.


FACT FINDING:

A Nigerian NGO for investigative reporting, The International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR describes itself thus on its website:

"is an independent, nonprofit news agency that seeks to promote transparency and accountability through robust and objective investigative reporting. The ICIR’s mission is to promote good governance and entrench democratic values by reporting, exposing, and combating corruption. The Center is envisioned to be a catalyst in encouraging and fostering a tradition of journalistic excellence through creative investigative reporting, online publishing, and training programs."

This NGO fact checked the report that an imminent attack by Hezballah on Lagos was foiled and these are the conclusions:

FACT-CHECK: Did security agencies foil planned Hezbollah attack on Lagos?


ON June 19, a news report by TVC News Nigeria claimed that security agencies foiled a planned attack by a terrorist group, Hezbollah, on Ikoyi and Lekki areas of Lagos state.

The report, republished by several blogs including Today.ng, gistville.com, thestreetjournal.org, Nairaland.com, with all of them quoting TVCNews, was also shared on Twitter by Osaretin Victor Asemota with username @asemota on June 20.

The post has been shared 293 times and garnered 290 likes with 38 comments as of Tuesday, June 23.

The Claim

“A major operation by the Islamist group Hezbollah was foiled in Lagos with the arrest of Ali Mohammed el hassan in Ikoyi overnight.

“Details of this operation have not been revealed because of the highly sensitive nature of the plot – TVC News gathered from a source that Hezbollah under the leadership of Mr El Hassan had planned a major attack on Ikoyi and the Lekki areas of Lagos.

“Nigerian security agencies acted on a tip from international intelligence and apprehended the suspect at an undisclosed location in Ikoyi,” TVCNewsNG had reported.

The Findings

A fact-check by The ICIR revealed that the news report had been pulled down on the TVCNews verified Instagram account and website which initially published the report.

However, The ICIR was able to retrieve a cache version of the webpage using Google verification tool. (See screenshot below).

But when The ICIR contacted the Lagos State Commissioner for Information, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, he said he’s not aware of such development.

“I am not aware of the news,” he told The ICIR via phone call.

In order to further verify the news, The ICIR contacted the security agencies, namely the Police, State Security Services and the Nigerian military.

“I can’t speak on the news because the news said security agencies and not the police, which I represent,” Police Spokesman for Lagos Command, Bala Elkana, told The ICIR.

Also, the Nigerian Army spokesperson, Sagir Musa, said he is unaware of such report.

“I am unaware of such,” Musa told The ICIR in a brief telephone conversation.

Similarly, when contacted by The ICIR, Peter Afunnaya, the Department of State Services (DSS) spokesperson, said “It’s fake news”.

The Verdict

Based on all available information obtained by The ICIR, it is evident that the report is FALSE.


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  • Rafidi

    Rafidi

    Legendary Member
    Does Kataeb.org have a an editor?

    If it does, how did they manage to spread fake news?

    And can we think the Gmayyel seesan sponsored this report? To what end exactly?
     
    Robin Hood

    Robin Hood

    Legendary Member
    Orange Room Supporter
    How much were they paid to write this?

    Sent from my SM-G973W using Tapatalk
     
    Nonan

    Nonan

    Legendary Member
    Orange Room Supporter
    I just saw another fake news on LF, Kataeb and MTV websites. They are all claiming that Berri is not a piece of $$$$hit that belongs in the dustbin. How long aren’t they going to spread their lies to destabilize this country and the سلام اهلي ?
     
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