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Fact Check: Was Imran Khan Expelled From Conference Of Islamic Countries For Speaking Against Ram Temple?

A viral message claiming Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan was expelled from a ‘Conference of Islamic Countries’ for condemning the construction of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya is being widely shared across social media platforms including Facebook and Twitter.

Newschecker found the message to be fabricated over old news reports stating, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation had snubbed Pakistan on discussing the Kashmir issue.

Imran Khan
Screenshot of the viral message posted on Facebook

The viral message claims, the leaders from UAE and Maldives spoke in favor of Hindus and denounced Imran Khan ‘for interfering in the internal affairs of India.’

The message continues to state that the king of Saudi Arabia asked Khan to leave the conference, which was applauded by all the Islamic countries.

The close to five-hundred-word long message carries a link to an article by WION News as a source and urges readers to ‘share the post’ and ‘spread the pride of Bharat.’

Using Crowd Tangle, a social media monitoring platform, we found the message has been shared almost 50 times on Facebook and has garnered hundreds of likes since November 30.

Imran Khan
Screenshot of the CrowdTangle data

Several Twitter users also shared the viral message.

In addition, Newschecker also received a request from a user on its WhatsApp helpline number (+91 9999499044), to check the veracity of the message.

Screenshot of the viral claim received by Newschecker on the WhatsApp helpline number

Factcheck/Verification

To check if the viral claim holds water, Newschecker opened the link mentioned as a source in the message and found it leads to an article by WION news, a Delhi-based English news channel.

The article titled, ‘Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) snubs Pakistan on Kashmir again,’ states that Pakistan’s efforts in discussing the Kashmir issue in OIC’s 47th annual session of the council of foreign ministers held in the Republic of Niger was rebuffed.

Imran Khan
Screenshot of WION news’ report

Organization of Islamic Cooperation is an alliance of 57 Muslim countries which describes itself as a ‘collective voice of the Muslim world’ that ‘endeavors to safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony among various people of the world.’

WION’s report dated November 26, 2020, neither mentions Ayodhya nor the Ram temple but states, ‘Pakistan has been demanding discussion on Kashmir and wanted the OIC to raise the issue. It wanted its members to join its propaganda drive against India, however, the OIC has snubbed Pakistan.’

Further, Newschecker found the conference titled, ‘United against Terrorism for Peace and Development’ was not attended by the heads of state as mentioned in the viral claim but by foreign ministers of the OIC countries.

Pakistan’s delegation to the conference was headed by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and not by Imran Khan. 

Likewise, the Minister of State for International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates, Reem Al-Hashemy, and foreign affairs minister of Maldives, Abdulla Shahid attended the conference.

Similarly, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was represented by Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah, the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Conclusion

The viral message claiming Minister Imran Khan was expelled from a ‘Conference of Islamic Countries’ for condemning the construction of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya is false. Imran Khan did not represent Pakistan in the said conference and the claim is fabricated.

Result: Fabricated

Our Sources

Report by WION News
Organization of Islamic Cooperation
Tweet by Pakistan’s Ministry of foreign affairs


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