Pakistan’s defense minister threatened Israel that his country could use nuclear weapons after a fake news report that his Israeli counterpart had threatened “nuclear retaliation” for Islamabad’s role in Syria against IS, highlighting the serious problem proliferation of fake news poses.
Khawaja Asif. ReutersKhawaja Asif. Reuters
A report in the New York Times said a fake news story prompted Pakistan defence minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif to threaten to go nuclear.
In a post on Twitter, Asif lashed at Israel after a false report — which the minister apparently believed — that Israel had threatened Pakistan with nuclear weapons.
“Israeli def min threatens nuclear retaliation presuming pak role in Syria against Daesh,” the minister wrote on his official Twitter account, using an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State. “Israel forgets Pakistan is a Nuclear state too.”
The NYT report said Asif appeared to be reacting to the fake news article published on awdnews.com, which was titled ‘Israeli Defense Minister: If Pakistan send ground troops to Syria on any pretext, we will destroy this country with a nuclear attack’.
The article had appeared on the website on 20 December, alongside articles with headlines like ‘Clinton is staging a military coup against Trump’.