Imran Khan’s message was not displayed on Burj Khalifa

The landmark has never displayed images of Khan.

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Claim: Former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s message regarding his 27 March 2022 public gathering ahead of the no-confidence vote was projected on the Burj Khalifa in the United Arab Emirates.

Fact: The video of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, being illuminated with Khan’s message is not real. In fact, the landmark has never displayed images of Khan, as of 28 March 2022.

Fact or Fiction?

On 24 March 2022, Facebook page PTI Saudi Arabia shared a video claiming that it showed former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s message being displayed on the Burj Khalifa. 

The caption of the post reads; “وزیراعظم پاکستان عمران خان کا اپنی قوم سے خصوصی پیغام جسے آج برج خلیفہ پر چلایا گیا ویڈیو ملاحظہ کیجئے ۔ [PM Imran Khan’s special message for his nation was displayed on Burj Khalifa. Please watch]”

The one-minute 34-second video clip shows a video clip of Khan addressing the nation projected onto the Burj Khalifa, ahead of the no-confidence vote he faced early on Sunday, 10 April 2022, which ousted him from power. 

Soch Fact Check found the claim to be false.  The footage used in the viral video is taken from Khan’s 24 March 2022 video message in which he urged his supporters to come out in support of him at Islamabad’s Parade Ground on 27 March. The one-minute 33-second clip was shared by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s official Facebook page with the caption, “وزیراعظم عمران خان کا 27 مارچ پریڈ گراؤنڈ اسلام آباد جلسے کے حوالے سے قوم کے نام اہم پیغام… [Prime Minister Imran Khan’s important message for his nation regarding 27 March Parade Ground public gathering in Islamabad].”

To investigate the claim, Soch Fact Check got in touch with Emaar, the property developer that built Burj Khalifa

“Kindly be advised that the below is our official Facebook account only and you may find all our LED shows there directly https://www.facebook.com/BurjKhalifa/,” Emaar responded.

Soch Fact Check used the search feature on their page but could not find any post or LED show related to ‘Imran Khan’. 

A Google search using the phrase, “Imran Khan Burj Khalifa,” revealed that some IFCN-certified fact-checking websites — including AFP, Boom Live and others such as Newschecker — have debunked the claim that the Burj Khalifa was illuminated with Khan’s message.

According to AFP Fact Check, a representative for Emaar confirmed to them that “this video is not real” and the landmark had “never before” displayed images of Khan, as of  28 March 2022.

Soch Fact Check was able to find a link to the original video, posted by Twitter user @Noxious_Numaira on 24 March 2022, via the text superimposed on the footage. 

On March 27, the user revealed that the viral video was digitally created. She shared a screenshot of the comments section of a post sharing the video and said: “This is amazing. The video has my Twitter handle watermarked and my YouTube channel is linked.

“I’ve mentioned in both places that I edit videos/pics. Now if people still think it’s true then I’m the goddess of VFX. It’s not my fault people think it’s real.” 

Virality

According to a CrowdTangle analysis conducted by Soch Fact Check, the search term “عمران خان برج خلیفہ پر” turned up 189 posts on Facebook which received a total of 7,877 interactions over the 30-day period leading up to 5 April 2022.

The claim was picked up by different pages on Facebook, including here, here, here, here and here, among others.

The analysis revealed that پاکستانی Pakistani’s post is performing 2.24x better than other similar posts with 116 likes, 32 shares and 587 views.

Meanwhile, the English search term “Imran Khan on Burj Khalifa” has garnered 10,530 interactions across 112 posts during the same period.

The claim was shared on different Facebook pages, including here and here, among others.

Featuring the English search term, Ali Imtiaz Warraich’s post gained significant traction; 2,600 likes, 672 shares and 13,300 views. It is performing 2.69x better than other similar posts.

According to the analysis, the posts peaked between 20 March and 26 March, receiving a cumulative  10,300 interactions during this time.

On Twitter, the video posted by Numaira (@Noxious_Numaira) gained significant  traction with 49,500 views, 3,478 likes, 1,378 retweets and 73 quote tweets.

It was also shared by other users on Twitter, including here, here, here, here and here, among others.

Conclusion: Imran Khan’s message calling people to join him at a public gathering in Islamabad on 27 March 2022 at Parade Ground, Islamabad, was not projected on the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. The video in question has been digitally created and is not real.

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