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Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz has not died

Old bulletin announcing his brother King Abdullah’s death rehashed

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Claim: Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz has died.

Fact: Saudi King Salman has not died. A video accompanying the claim is actually an announcement of the death of his predecessor, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, in 2015.

On 15 April 2023, Facebook page ‘pwdpi.com’ posted a video (archive) claiming that King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the monarch of Saudi Arabia, has died. The clip has text in Indonesian, stating, “Inna lillahi wa Inna ilaihi Raji’un. raja Salman wafat 22 Ramadhan 1444h,” which roughly translates to King Salman died on 22 Ramadhan 1444h, or 13 April 2023.

Other posts with similar captions, such as this one (archive), include a newscaster reporting on the alleged death of King Salman.

Fact or Fiction?

Soch Fact Check used reverse image search tools to ascertain the origin of the clip showing the newscaster and found it posted on 23 January 2015 on the YouTube channel سكاي نيوز عربية, with the following title:

السعودية تعلن وفاة الملك عبد الله
[Saudi Arabia announces the death of King Abdullah].”

We also found the claim appeared in a video (archive) posted by TikTok user @danihamdani9, who has more than 16,200 followers and received over 3.9 million views on it.

We used page source on Google Chrome to ascertain that the video was posted at ‘1681463901’ in Epoch Unix time in computing terms, which, when converted to Pakistan Standard Time (PST) — GMT+0500 — turns out to be 2:18 PM on 14 April 2023.

The picture of King Salman is, in fact, from a meeting with US Senator John McCain in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh, on February 21, 2017. It was shot by photographer Bandar Algaloud and is available on Getty Images here.

Virality

Soch Fact Check found the claim here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

The claim was also shared in 2020 here.

Conclusion: Saudi King Salman has not died. A video accompanying the claim is actually an announcement of the death of his predecessor, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, in 2015.


Background image in cover photo: Hala AlGhanim

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