“Pakistan imposes sanctions on Russia, refuses to repay loans” is Fake News

Indian satirical website The Fauxy recently published a satire that said Pakistan is contributing to the economic sanctions against Russia by not repaying the $1 billion loan amount it had sought from Moscow. That Fake News was published as actual news by international media.

"Pakistan imposes sanctions on Russia, refuses to repay loans" is Fake News

A satirical take on debt-ridden Pakistan’s contribution to the economic sanctions imposed against Russia in the wake of the Ukraine invasion was passed off as actual news by many international media outlets.

Indian satirical website The Fauxy recently published a satire that said Pakistan is contributing to the west’s economic sanctions against Russia by not repaying the $1 billion loan amount it had sought from Moscow. The article was meant as a sarcastic swipe against Pakistan, whose foundering economy is perpetually propped up by loans Islamabad continues to seek from countries around the world.

"Pakistan imposes sanctions on Russia, refuses to repay loans" is Fake NewsThe Fauxy‘s description clearly states that the articles on this site are satirical and bogus

The article mockingly asserted that given the poor economic state of Pakistan, and in the absence of any leverage it has on Russia, the only way Islamabad could do its bit in punishing the Kremlin for its invasion of Ukraine is by defaulting on the $1 billion loans it had allegedly sought from Moscow.

International media outlets pass off a satirical article on Islamabad imposing sanctions against Russia as real news

Some Japanese and Korean websites were among those who lapped up the sarcastic claims made in the piece published on the Fauxy, presuming them to be factual and reproducing them on their respective websites. They asserted that Pakistan is joining the Russian sanctions through non-payment of its debts.

Japanese media organisation J-Cast was one of the news outlets that considered a sarcastic take on Pakistan’s alleged sanctions against Russia as an authoritative source of information and promptly published an article amplifying the claim that Islamabad would use non-payment of its loan amount as a mark of protest against the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

"Pakistan imposes sanctions on Russia, refuses to repay loans" is Fake News

Another Japanese websites also published a satirical article as actual news, stating that Pakistan was going to inflict punishment on Russia by defaulting on its loan payments.

The economic crisis in Pakistan

It is worth noting that Pakistan has been teetering on the edge of an imminent financial collapse for the last several years.

"Pakistan imposes sanctions on Russia, refuses to repay loans" is Fake News

To delay the catastrophe, Pakistani PM Imran Khan has been running pillar to post from one country to another seeking loans to keep the country’s precarious economy afloat and to pay off the previous loans. Khan had sought loans from Saudi Arabia, China and various other countries. As of data from June 2021, the Public Debt of Pakistan is around PKR 39.9 trillion which is 83.5 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP) of Pakistan. Out of which, the domestic debt stood at PKR 26.2 trillion, whereas external debt was PKR 13.6 trillion (USD 86.4 billion).

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