Nov. 14 UPDATE:
MSN News Pulls the Bogus Story
Following CAMERA's communication with MSN News and publication of this post, the news site has removed the baseless article falsely charging that Palestinians died from tear gas inhalation during Nov. 11 clashes. Viewers who click on the link are informed "This page no longer exists," and then redirected to the site's home page. CAMERA commends MSN News for removing the false story from its platform.
Ranked second in the world for the number of visits, MSN.com is a news site with big traffic. 775.6 million visitors, to be exact. It also has a big problem. "World class news from trusted sources" is the tagline for the giant news aggregator, even as it posts blatantly fake news.
The Sierra Leone-based News 360 story appearing on MSN News yesterday ("Several Palestinian civilians die of asphyxiation in clashes with Israeli forces") claiming that several Palestinians died Nov. 11 as a result of tear gas inhalation during clashes is a fabrication through and through. Writer Daniel Stewart of News 360 fabricates:
Several Palestinian civilians were suffocated to death on Friday during clashes with Israeli forces near the Abu al-Rish checkpoint, located in southern Hebron, southern West Bank.
In addition, dozens of others faced breathing difficulties after inhaling tear gas north of Hebron, in al Aroub refugee camp, and as many others in the center of the city, in Bab al Zawiya area, WAFA news agency reported.
Even the Palestinian government-controlled WAFA news agency cited by News 360 does not claim that any Palestinians died due to teargas inhalation on Friday, Nov. 11. Moreover, WAFA does not report on any Palestinian deaths at all under any circumstances in clashes that day. In the past, unsubstantiated claims that Palestinians died as a result of teargas inhalation were disputed or retracted.
It's unclear on what basis MSN has determined that the Sierra Leone news outlet is a "trusted source." In any event, surely the "world-class" news aggregator can do better than a made-up news story on Palestinian deaths.
CAMERA has sent feedback to MSN News, requesting a retraction of this bogus news. We encourage readers to likewise submit feedback to MSN about this fake news story by clicking on "feedback" at the bottom right-hand corner of the article's page. Stay tuned for any updates.
Correction, 9:40 am EST: Due to a reporting error, this post initially confused Pakistan's News 360 with Sierra Leone's News 360. It has been updated to reflect the fact that the bogus report originated with the Sierra Leone media outlet. CAMERA regrets the error.