Iceland not paying immigrants to marry country’s women – and has no shortage of men

Facebook posts shared in Nigeria claim Iceland has a shortage of men and will pay immigrants up to $5,000 to marry Icelandic women. 

“Apply Now – Due to lack of men, Iceland paying immigrants $5,000 to marry their women – Reports” reads the headline of one. It includes a photo of a woman that we found was taken in Iceland in 2006 by George Jardine.

The link shared on 3 October 2017 seems broken or expired, so the original article can’t be accessed.  

A Facebook post from 2 June 2017 has a similar headline: “Iceland will pay $5,000 ~ N1.8 Million to immigrants who will marry their women. Who wants to marry?”  

It adds: “Due to lack of men, Iceland will pay $5,000 per month to immigrants who marry Icelandic women!”

Does Iceland have so few men that it’s willing to pay immigrants to marry the country’s women?

We checked.

More men than women in Iceland

In the first three months of 209 Iceland had 183,920 men and 174,860 women, according to the country’s most recent population data. So there are more men in Iceland than women. 

The Embassy of Iceland in Kampala, Uganda, which also represents Iceland in Kenya, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Malawi and Namibia, told Africa Check the claim was false.

“This information is indeed false and has been circulating on the web for a couple of years,” the embassy told Africa Check in a direct message on Facebook.  

And there is no government grant for immigrants who marry Icelandic women.

The claims have been debunked by fact-checking website Snopes and Nigerian Facebook page the Loud Voice. – Grace Gichuhi 


Africa Check teams up with Facebook

Africa Check has partnered with Facebook to combat fake news and false information on the social platform. This fact-check is part of the initiative.

As part of its third-party fact-checking programme, Facebook allows its partners to see public articles, pictures or videos that have been flagged as potentially inaccurate.

Content rated as “false” by fact-checkers will be downgraded in news feeds. This means fewer people will see it.

You can help us identify fake news and false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.

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