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Chinese intercepted 7,200 penis shipment from Nigeria is false—-AFP Fact Check.

 

A story making the rounds on social media about 7,200 harvested human penis shipments intercepted by Chinese Customs in China has been proven to be fallacious.
According to AFP Fact Check, the false story emanated from World News Daily Report ( WNDR), a satirical website known for its hoax stories.

“A story that has been shared multiple times on social media, including WhatsApp, claims that thousands of human penises shipped from Nigeria in a refrigerated container were intercepted in China.
” The claim is false; the story originated on a satirical website, and the accompanying photo was published in an article about a pangolin seizure in 2020.”
AFP fact check further revealed that the article was first published by World News Daily Report (WNDR) on March 19, 2021, according to data provided by social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle.
It has been shared nearly 700 times on Facebook and reposted by online news sites including Naija Tell, The Podium, Gbetu TV, Town Crier, and Sundiata Post.

“This article surfaced about a year after AFP Fact Check debunked a different story from the same satirical website, whose slogan is  “facts don’t matter”.

AFP Fact Check found that the recent article from WNDR was shared online by several social media accounts known for promoting the activities of Nigeria’s separatist Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The Biafra separatist group has been pushing for an independent state in southeastern Nigeria since 1970, which has resulted in repeated clashes with Nigeria’s security forces and heightened tensions in the region.

In the false Facebook post taken on April 12th,2021, the author of the fake Facebook account said:
“This is What Our Leader IPOB Mazi Nnamdi Kanu Was Saying….That Nigeria Security Agencies …Esp The DSS And SARS Arrest Our People, kill them and Harvest Their organs and Sell to Chinese…..(sic),”
 reads the caption of a post on this Facebook account.

SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) is the disbanded Nigerian police unit accused of extrajudicial killings. DSS (Department of State Services) refers to Nigeria’s secret police.

“If there is any proof needed for this allegation…this is it….Security Agencies In Nigeria Esp SARS Unit Funded by the British Are Predators!” the caption continues.

WNDR’s story was also published on WhatsApp and Instagram, as well as on Twitter. Twitter user Savn Daniel previously shared a claim about the supply of French weapons to Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram that AFP Fact Check debunked.

This recent article has also circulated in other African countries, including Malawi, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“However, the entire story is fabricated”, the AFP Fact Check revealed.

The World News Daily Report is a satirical website, which it explains in a disclaimer in its “About Us” section.

 The site assumes “all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content.”

In the disclaimer section of the satirical website, it says “all characters appearing in the articles in this website – even those based on real people – are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.”

Although the photo used in the fictitious article was taken in China, it is unrelated to the story’s purported seizure.

AFP Fact Check ran a Bing reverse image search and found the picture in a 2020 report on the website of China’s customs agency. The report details a joint customs operations interception of 820 kilograms of pangolin scales that were smuggled into the country.

Screenshot of the website of Chinese customs, taken on April 12, 2021 states
“Customs seizes suspected smuggled pangolin scales at a logistics warehouse,” reads the Chinese caption of the photo translated into English.

Another reverse image search of the other image in the WNDR article led to a photo of four uniformed men that was published through stock photography agency Alamy on April 15, 2019.

“Vice Minister of the General Administration of Customs of China (GAC) Hu Wei (2nd L) speaks at a press conference in Beijing, capital of China, April 15, 2019,” reads the caption on the photo without identifying the other three people.

Furthermore, AFP’s journalist in Hong Kong confirmed that none of the names plaques in front of the four Chinese officials read “Li Wu”, who was identified as the customs spokesman in the satirical article.

As of April 13, 2021, the spokesman for the General Administration of Customs of China is Li Kuiwen, according to a Chinese state-owned Xinhua news agency.

The purported spokesman of Chinese Customs who made the revelation, Li Wu, does not exist.
Facts about World News Daily Report(WNDR)
World News Daily Report (WNDR) is a satirical fake news website purporting to be an American Jewish Zionist newspaper based in Tel Aviv and dedicated to covering biblical archeology news and other mysteries around the Globe.
It is headquartered in Quebec, Canada.
The site, which was launched in November 2023, is run by Canadians Janick Murray-Hall and Olivier Legault and follows the old-school tabloid-style faux-journalism of its predecessors, such as the Weekly World News.
Snopes.com reports that the website perpetrates hoaxes and rumors to prey on credulous readers.
The website combines religious and scientific fakery, political conspiracy theories, and “the occasional seed of truth” to create its false reports.

The Washington Post describes the World News Daily Report as a website that “delights in inventing items about foreigners, often Muslims, having sex with or killing animals”

The website carries this disclaimer: “WNDR assumes however all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website even those based on real people are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.”

The editors of the satirical website have said of the site, the “site was intended to encourage self-criticism, but it is people’s fault if they wanted to believe fake stories.
“The people who take it seriously are people who want to take it seriously. It’s stupid to say, but… We preach to converts. The majority of people who share it understand that it’s a joke, and others share it because they want to believe it, not because they really believe in it… You can invent everything and anything and people will believe it.
“Honestly, it’s a little disturbing when you realise that. As long as you confirm what they want to believe, they will share it. If you go against their opinion, they will immediately think that this is false news. But if you go in the direction of their opinion, they will share it right away. They lose their critical spirit.”
 “our main goal is to have fun with this medium, but we still want to get a message through. It is a criticism of sensationalism in the media”

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Foreign

2,044  stranded Nigerians repatriated  from Libya in 8 Months – NEMA

Director General of NEMA, Mustapha Habib Ahmed
…as 174 stranded Nigerians arrive Lagos 

Eyewitness reporter

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), said it has repatriated 2,044 Nigerians stranded in the crisis-ridden North African country, Libya into the country.

This was disclosed by the Director General of NEMA, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, against the backdrop of fresh 174 stranded Nigerians brought back into the country from Libya at the Cargo wing of Muritala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, on Tuesday.

It could be recalled that the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), in collaboration with the European Union (EU) has been repatriating thousands of stranded Nigerians from various countries since 2017 through a Special Assisted Voluntary Repatriation Programme (SAVP).

The NEMA DG, who was represented by the Lagos territorial office coordinator, Ibrahim Farinloye, said in 2022, the agency received 12 flights, with 2,044 Nigerians that are stranded in Libya, but assisted back into the country.

Giving details of the repatriated Nigerians, he said, “Out of those brought back are, 848 male adults, 719 female adults, 180 children and 123 infants.

He continued, “the aircraft landed at the cargo Wing of the Murtala Muhammad International Airport at about 1535 hours.
“The profiles of the returnees show that 69 female adults; five female children and 10 female infants were brought back.”
“Also aboard the flight are 75 male adults, 12 male children and three male infants. Among the returnees are 23 with minor medical cases.”

Agencies present to receive the returnees are, the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS); the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN); the Refugee Commission, the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

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Foreign

EU freezes Russian oligarchs’ assets worth over 10 billion Euro  (Rs82K crore )

Russian President Vladimir Putin

In retaliation to the Russian military offensive against Ukraine, the European Union has blocked the assets of Russian oligarchs worth nearly €10 billion (over Rs 82K crore) as part of sanctions, TASS reported.

Further, another set of frozen assets was reported in the month of April.

As the war in Ukraine has reached its 91st day, the EU has provided billions of euros in military aid to war-torn Ukraine to fight against Russia’s unjustified invasion, further imposing severe sanctions on Moscow.

Earlier in April, the European Union had frozen about €30 billion (Rs 2,48,418 crore) in assets of Russian and Belarusian oligarchs and businesses.

 This came on April 8, when European Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders presided over the fifth meeting of the EU’s Freeze and Seize Task Force, which included members from the United States and Ukraine.

Assets worth €29.5 billion have been frozen, and transactions worth €196 billion have been banned, according to the EU statement.

 Didier Reynders had deemed it essential for the EU and its foreign allies so that they can step up their efforts to cease supporting Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war machine.
He emphasised that, in addition to implementing punishments, it is also necessary to track their progress.
He urged all members to take the necessary steps to implement the sanctions on Russia.

Josep Borrell has also recommended taking frozen Russian foreign exchange assets to reconstruct Ukraine.

Apart from this, to fund the costs of reconstructing the war-torn country, the European Union’s top official had recommended taking frozen Russian foreign exchange assets.
 Josep Borrell, the EU’s high representative for foreign policy, spoke to the Financial Times on May 8 about how the US used Afghanistan’s blocked funds to pay compensation to terrorism victims and to provide humanitarian help to the country.
He emphasised that using Russian funds to restore a country devastated by conflict makes sense.
According to the Financial Times report, EU authorities are looking into whether Russian reserves may be redirected towards Ukraine’s building.

Meanwhile, the European Union has approved a 500 million euro military aid tranche for Ukraine.

 After the approval of three tranches of military assistance totaling 1.5 billion euros this year, the fourth tranche would add 500 million euros to financing previously assigned to Ukraine underneath the European Peace Facility (EPF), bringing the total amount to 2 billion euros, according to a statement released by the European Council on Tuesday.

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Foreign

Egypt rakes in $15m daily from Suez canal vessel traffic

The artificial channel of Suez canal
—-generates $5.61 billion in 2020, $6.3 billion in 2221

Egypt is making bountiful harvests of revenue from its man-made Suez canal with daily earnings of $15millon from the maritime traffic.

Mr. Gorge Safwat, Spokesman for the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), made the disclosure on Thursday while hosting 27 top journalists from sub-Saharan Africa at the headquarters of the company in Ismailia District, northeast of Cairo.

Suez Canal stretches from Port Said on the Mediterranean Sea to the city of Suez on the northeastern shores of the Gulf of Suez, separating Egypt from the Sinai Peninsula.

Safwat explained that up to one billion tons of maritime cargo passed through the canal every year and that up to 20,000 ships had passed through the canal in the first quarter of 2022, carrying goods to various countries around the globe.

He said that the canal, the longest man-made in the world, had recorded increased revenue, generating about $5.61 billion in 2020, due to the determination and doggedness of Egyptians.

Safwat announced that the company made about $6.3 billion from its activities last year, saying that the construction of the canal 152 years ago, demonstrated the willpower and can-do spirit of the citizens of the Arab nation.

Tracing the history of the canal, the spokesman said it took the labour of about one million Egyptians and 120,000 deaths to put the canal in place in 1859.

Safwat noted that the number of ships using the canal daily had also increased from 45 per day in 2015 to 60 per day at present, describing the route as one of the safest in the world.

In March 2021, a huge container ship, known as Ever Given, belonging to Evergreen Shipping Lines, got wedged and blocked the Suez Canal, disrupting global maritime trade for weeks.

However, the ship, which the Egyptian Government impounded, was later released after agreeing to a deal on compensation with the government.

The 193-km Suez Canal connects the Mediterranean Sea at the canal’s northern end to the Red Sea in the south and it provides the shortest link between Asia and Europe.

The authorities of the SCA took the visiting journalists on a boat cruise on the old and new canals built by the government.

The journalists noticed the intense maritime activity taking place round the hour on the canal, helping to boost the prosperity of the North African country.

Egypt, which is currently one of Africa’s biggest economies, has embarked on various developmental projects, to sustain its position as a pacesetter in both the Arab world and sub-Saharan Africa.

The rich North African country has a population of about 106 million people, making it the third-largest country in Africa.

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