VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Putin DID NOT ask for help, borrow money from Marcos

A YouTube video is insinuating that Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized his Philippine counterpart Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos as the “most powerful president in the world” and claims he is “courting” the latter to ask for help. This misleads. 

Uploaded on Oct. 20, the deceptive video, also shared on Facebook (FB), had a thumbnail carrying the text:

“Putin, Nais Magpatulong kay PBBM (Putin, wants to ask PBBM for help).” 

It used a photo of then-president-elect Marcos and Russian Ambassador Marat Pavlov during a June 13 courtesy call and a 2017 photo of Putin scratching his nose.

The misleading phrases “Can we borrow money?” and “Putin nahihiya (Putin is embarrassed)?” were superimposed on them.

The video claimed that Putin is “struggling” which led him to “court” Marcos to improve Russia’s economy. 

At the 29-second mark, the narrator said: 

“Ang Russia ay tila baga ay isang third world country na lumalapit sa atin upang sa gayon humingi ng tulong patungkol sa pagpapalago ng ekonomiya ng Russia (Russia is acting like a third world country who is reaching out to us to ask for help to improve Russia’s economy).” 

The video did not present evidence that shows Putin and Russia “asking for help” or “borrowing money” from Marcos. 

It only contained an Oct. 7 news clip from SMNI News where Pavlov said Russia wants to strengthen its economic relationship with the Philippines “by developing equal and mutually beneficial cooperation.”

The video repeated a previously-debunked claim that Marcos was the “most powerful” and “richest” president in the world. (Read VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is NOT world’s richest president)

The video came out a day after Pavlov said Russia was ready to coordinate if the Philippines was interested in buying their oil. 

It was in response to Marcos’ Oct. 5 statement where he said the Philippines is taking a “balanced view” on the issue of the Ukraine-Russia war as the country “may have to deal with Russia for fuel, for fertilizer.”

The misleading video posted by previously fact-checked YouTube channel Sa Iyong Araw (created on Apr 2, 2021) garnered 208,000 views. The YouTube link was also shared by some netizens and FB groups like PRESIDENT BONGBONG MARCOS & VPRESIDENT INDAY SARA DUTERTE2022 (Oct. 1, 2015).

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(Editor’s Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)