Video Of Pakistan Customs Destroying Cellphones Peddled As Afghanistan
BOOM found that the video shows customs officials in Pakistan destroying confiscated cell phones.
A video showing customs officials in Pakistan destroying confiscated cell phones is being shared online with a false claim that Afghanistan has banned mobile phones for religious reasons.
The humanitarian and economic crisis in Afghanistan has deepened since the Taliban swept back into power in August last year. The image has been shared in this context.
The 22-seconds long video shows uniformed officials, some carrying guns, stepping over and kicking cell phones discarded in an open ground.
The video has been captioned on Facebook as, "Cell phones are now banned in Afghanistan they are considered the eyes of SATAN."
The video has been shared on Twitter with same claims.
The video is archived here.
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BOOM watched the video closely and noticed that the uniforms of the officials show the flag of the Islamic Republic Pakistan and also have insignia of country's customs department.
At 14 seconds time stamp of the video we can spot an insignia of the Pakistan flag. Taking cue from this we were able to ascertain that the video belongs to Pakistan.
We found a video upload on December 31, 2021 was titled as "Pakistan Customs Destruction Ceremony. Customs Enforcement & Compliance". At 1: 13 onward similar uniformed officials are seen destroying cell phones and liquor bottles.
We compared the uniform seen in the viral video with an official who addressed on "Pakistan Customs Destruction Ceremony" in another video. The same officials are seen in a report by Daily City News Karachi.
Pakistani outlets The News reported on December 30, 2021, The Collectorate of Customs (Enforcement), Karachi, organised a ceremony on December 29 for the destruction of smuggled and contraband goods, including narcotics, liquor, gutka, medicines and betel nuts, worth millions of rupees.
Collector Customs Enforcement Feroz Alam Junejo said that the Department of Customs was destroying the smuggled and illicit goods after a gap of two years due to the coronavirus pandemic, though it was necessary to dispose of the illicit and smuggled goods every six months reported The Express Tribune. Feroz Alam Junejo can be seen while speaking in the event (1:50 onward) reported here.
A similar story about the annual destroying ceremony by Customs department of Pakistan was reported by Vice and Voice of America.
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