Kuwait Visa Ban: Russian news agency admits its report was untrue
New Delhi, Feb 4: The Kuwaiti visa ban on nationals of five Muslim-majority countries has been found to be a false news report. The report was circulated by a Russian news agency Sputnik on Thursday (Feb 02, 2017) and was picked by Indian news agency IANS and various leading newspapers in India.
The Sputnik International had flashed the news under this headline "Kuwait Imposes Visa Ban On Five Muslim-Majority Countries" on Feb 02. Without quoting any Kuwaiti official or Kuwaiti media, the Russian news agency had said: "The Kuwaiti government has told would-be migrants to not apply for visas from the five banned nations, as Kuwait City is worried about the possible migration of radical Islamic terrorists." The lead para of the story was this: "Kuwait has ripped a page from the playbook of US President Donald Trump by suspending the issuance of visas for travelers native to Syria, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran."
The news was picked mostly by Indian newspapers, and most of them took it from IANS on the same day (Feb 02). There was no such news in the Arab media or American media. By evening, IANS carried another news report wherein Pakistan's ambassador in Kuwait rejected the visa ban report as baseless. In this news, IANS also admitted that it could not immediately verify the ban news of Sputnik.
Screenshot from website of Sputnik where it admitted its news article about Kuwaiti visa ban proved to be untrue.
And soon after, the Sputnik updated its Feb 02 news admitting that its report was proved to be untrue.
"Correction: the following news article proved to be untrue. As Ghulam Dastagir, Pakistan's ambassador in Kuwait said on Wednesday, this rumor first appeared in 2011. Mr. Dastagir clarified that Kuwait hasn't placed any visa ban on Pakistani nationals," said Sputnik.
However, the Russian news agency didn't tell about the source of its news report that proved to be wrong.
In the end of Jan this year, US President Donald Trump had imposed a visa ban on seven Muslim-majority countries. Due to this order, Trump earned harsh global condemnation so much so that even United Nations denounced it.
ALSO READ: Pakistan envoy denies visa ban by Kuwait