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Viral Video depicting Christian persecution in Afghanistan false

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Claim: Viral video on WhatsApp depicts alleged persecution of  Christians in Afghanistan. 

The claim, as it appears on WhatsApp

Viral video making rounds on WhatsApp depicting the  alleged persecution of  Christians in Afghanistan is false. The incident the video depicted actually took place in Colombia, during a nationwide protest that erupted in the country around May this year. 

Full Text

A viral video making the rounds on WhatsApp claims that Christians in Afghanistan are persecuted. The video depicts some persons in full public glare wrapped in a nylon bag. While some lay, apparently unconscious, others merely sat, seemingly stressing to breathe. 

The video is accompanied by a short narrative “Christians in Afghanistan Wrapped in nylons to die. It is time to intensify our prayers for divine intervention” the message read. 

The video was reflected to have been forwarded many times on WhatsApp with no further clarification to it whatsoever. Conceivably,  this fluid transition the claim has attracted on Nigerian social media space may be linked to the religious aspect of it. A sensitive issue in Nigeria that has never failed to garner attention, especially at a time when many Nigerians fear the Taliban takeover may be feasible in Nigeria, owing to the presence of Boko Haram in which a former Nigerian Navy officer in an interview recently alleged the central goal of the group and their sponsors is   the ‘Islamization’ of Nigeria.

Already, the religious crises in Plateau State is causing a divide among the two major religions in Nigeria. As such, this heralding video may indirectly compound social relations in Nigeria if it’s allowed to keep on surfacing on the Nigerian social media space without urgent verification. As such DUBAWA ventures to substantiate the claim’s  veracity.

Verification

When DUBAWA conducted a keyframe reverse search of the video on InVid verifier (an open access tool for online video verification), results showed that the video was actually taken in Colombia during an Anti-Government protest in the country. 

Further findings  revealed  the video was first shared on May 27, 2021 with the heading “performance empaquetados el poblado Medellín paro nacional 26 mayo 2021” which is directly translated as “performance packed the town Medellín national strike May 26, 2021.”

The actual video shared on YouTube

Medellín, one of Colombia’s largest cities, was a hub for the  protest that rocked the country in May this year. In fact, the same protest that saw some persons wrapped in  nylon bags was also reported on a Colombian National Daily, a day after it took place. 

An image of the protest as reported on ADN, a Colombian daily newspaper

Apparently, this video is not from Afghanistan, nor does it in any way have anything to do with religion. Even more,  the same video has appeared on another platform with a  different narrative, allegedly implying that COVID-19 patients were wrapped up in plastic bags in Indonesia. 

Conclusion 

The alleged torture of Christians in Afghanistan, wrapped up in nylon bags is false. The incident took place in Medellin, Colombia during a protest that rocked the country in May.   

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