Incident of man on fire did not happen "anywhere in the UAE", say Dubai authorities

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A circulated video showing a man engulfed in flames that is alleged to have happened in Dubai has been debunked as fake news, as it did not occur in the said country.

Several Stompers alerted Stomp to the video of a man who had allegedly caught on fire because he had left his phone that was being charged with a portable charger in his pocket.

The video was circulating with messages claiming that this incident happened in Dubai.

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The video shows a man covered in flames, causing those around him to panic and disperse.

Several men are seen trying to put out the fire with either their own clothing or with a fire extinguisher. 

The man on fire is also seen stripping himself of his trousers in an attempt to rid himself of the flames.

A few other people step in later to extinguish the trail of flames the man left behind.

According to Dubai news site Gulf News, Major-General Khalil Ebrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant Commander-in-Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs of Dubai Police, said the incident in the video did not take place in any shopping mall in Dubai.

He said: “The video [of the incident] was not in The Dubai Mall or in any mall in the emirate. There is a police post in the mall and the officers did not receive any alert about such an incident."

The Major-General also warned the public against the circulation of fake news as it is punishable by law in Dubai.

He speculated the reason behind such content is to make the material go viral, given Dubai's international reputation.

In addition, Major-General Rashid Thani Al Matroushi, director-general of Dubai Civil Defence, said that no such incident was reported during the month of Ramadan.

He said: “According to our records, there were no accidents of a man caught on fire at any shopping centre or commercial complex. Nothing of this sort happened in Dubai during Ramadan, or anywhere else in the UAE."

Another news site, Morocco World News, reported that the man who was on fire was apparently caught shoplifting in the mall, and had returned later that day equipped with a flammable product, but the Moroccan authorities have not yet provided a statement on the incident.