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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Sudanese President Did NOT Step Down Amid Unrest

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sat, 29 Dec 2018 10:44:19 Z)

Did Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir step down after demonstrations and unrest rocked the country? No, that's not true: there have been demonstrations and riots according to international media but the story about the president stepping down was made up by a website that simply copied and modified an old article about a different president in another country stepping down in 2012. Al-Bashir has not stepped down according to any credible news sources.

The story originated from an article published by African Daily Voice on December 29, 2018 titled "Breaking: Sudanese President Steps Down Amid Unrest | The African Daily" (archived here) which opened:

Khartoum-Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir has resigned after weeks of demonstrations and a mutiny by some police officers.

Vice-President Bakri Hassan Saleh has been sworn in vowing to uphold the "rule of law". Hassan has been sworn in in presence of heavy security.

Mr Bashir is being held against his will by security forces at the presidential palace in the capital, his brother told the African-post

Screenshot of https://african-daily.com/breaking-sudanese-president-steps-down-amid-unrest/

Users on social media only saw this title and thumbnail:

Breaking: Sudanese President Steps Down Amid Unrest | The African Daily

The funny thing is the BBC published almost the exact same story with the exact same words in 2012 but about the president of the Maledives resigning:

Maldives leader quits amid unrest

Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed has resigned after weeks of demonstrations and a mutiny by some police officers. Vice-President Waheed Hassan was sworn in vowing to uphold the "rule of law". Mr Nasheed is being held against his will by security forces at the presidential palace in the capital, his brother told the BBC.

Even the spokesperson is the same in the BBC story:

"It was not a coup at all, it was the wish of the people,'' Ahmed Thoufeeg, the vice president's secretary, told AP news agency. Mr Hassan's office has denied widespread reports that the military put pressure on Mr Nasheed to resign.

No trustworthy sources have confirmed the news about al-Bashir stepping down so it is safe to view this article as just clickbait created to make some scammers a bit of cash via the ads on the page. The African Daily website was only registered about a month ago by someone in Kenya according to WHOIS data:

Domain:african-daily.com
Registrar:Wild West Domains, LLC
Registered On:2018-12-05
Expires On:2019-12-05

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About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk
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