BJP leader Kapil Mishra shared an unsubstantiated report on Twitter which claimed that more than 100 People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers were killed in the Galwan Valley clash between India and China. However, we found out that the report was posted on a blog which falsely attributes the information to a Chinese dissident – Jianli Yang, who was also incorrectly referred to as an ex-PLA official.
Speaking with The Quint, Jianli Yang denied making any such statement.
This viral post comes in the backdrop of the violent clashes in the Galwan Valley in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed. While reports suggested causalities on both sides, the Chinese side hasn’t released an official number.
The report titled ‘More Than 100 Chinese Soldiers Killed In Galwan Valley : Chinese Military Official Accepted’ has been shared by multiple Twitter handles and has been shared thousands of times.
The report goes on to claim that “Jianli Yang, a former Chinese military official and a son of a leader in the Chinese communist party, accepted that ‘More than 100 Chinese soldiers were killed in the dreadful conflict between Indian and Chinese soldiers.”
Republic TV, too, carried a story on the same with a headline ‘China Lost 100 Soldiers In Galwan Clash,' Says Former Chinese Military Official; Slams Xi’.
The report has been shared with the same claim on Twitter and Facebook.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
1. STORY APPEARED ON A BLOG WITH NO LEGITIMATE SOURCE
We noticed that the story appeared on a websites called ‘Kreately,’ which is essentially a blog where anyone can publish anything. Secondly, there was no official source or authentic information in the story. In fact, the story is riddled with grammatical and spelling errors.
Take this for example, the story goes on to say that the revelation has been made by ‘Jianli Yang’ who has been identified as a former Chinese military official and a son of a leader in the Chinese communist party. The article further goes on to spell his name as ‘Gianli’.
But in reality, Jianli is a Chinese dissident residing in United States of America. Speaking to The Quint he also clarified that he was neither associated with the PLA nor was his father a leader of the Communist Party of China.
However, he recently wrote an opinion piece in The Washington Times in which he argued that admitting the number of casualties might cause “domestic unrest”. Nowhere in the piece did he mentioned that 100 Chinese soldiers were killed in the Galwan Valley.
"“I have never given out that number. I have no idea whatsoever how that quote from me came into being.”" - Jianli Yang
2. THE IMAGE USED IN THE STORY IS AT LEAST 7 YEARS OLD
Further we conducted a reverse search on the image which led us to a video uploaded in 2013 by C-SPAN, which is an American cable and satellite television network.
According to the description of the video: “Experts on the human rights situation in China testified before the House Subcommittee on Global Human Rights. In their testimony they called on President Obama to be aggressive on the issue of such abuses in China in his upcoming meeting with the new Chinese President Xi Jingping.
Jianli Yang was one of the speakers.
The same photograph has been used in the blogpost.
3. TWEET USED BY REPUBLIC TV IS ALSO NOT FROM ANY VERIFIED SOURCE
Other than the aforementioned red flags in the story, Republic TV has used a screenshot of a tweet by an impostor account of ‘Tsai Ing-Wen’, the president of Taiwan.
Tsai Ing-Wen’s official Twitter handle is ‘@iingwen’ and she hasn’t shared any such information on her profile.
Evidently, a report which has no authentic sources of information is being widely shared to claim that 100 PLA soldiers died in the Galwan clashes.
(Update: The story has been updated to incorporate the misleading article being shared by Republic TV and to accommodate a clarification from Dr Jianli Yang.)
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