Russia Gets In on This Year's April Fools' Day Jokes
'For election interference, press 3'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 1, 2017 5:08 PM CDT
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In this Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2016 file photo Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov listens to a journalist's question during news conference in Moscow, Russia.   (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File)

(Newser) – Need some election interference? The Russian Foreign Ministry is ready to help—or so it says on April Fools' Day. On Saturday, the ministry posted on its Facebook page an audio file of the purported new automated telephone switchboard message for Russian embassies. "To arrange a call from a Russian diplomat to your political opponent, press 1," the recording begins, in Russian and English. Press 2 "to use the services of Russian hackers," and 3 "to request election interference." A ministry duty officer, who did not give his name in line with official practice, confirmed to the AP that the post was an official joke. More coverage of April Fools' Day gags:

  • Slate lists some of the best pranks of 2017, including the Irish Times claiming President Trump would be building a new Trump Tower in the country.
  • Adweek and Mashable round up hoaxes from brands, including "Whopper cologne" from Burger King and "Petlexa" from Amazon.
  • Mashable has a separate article dedicated to just the pranks from Google.
  • The New York Daily News reports that George Takei fooled a bunch of people when he claimed he would be running for Congress in an attempt to unseat Devin Nunes.
  • E! Online rounds up April Fools' Day pranks from other celebrities.
  • A Democratic representative marked April 1 with a fake bill proposal calling for Trump to be banned from "unsupervised tweeting," Mediaite reports.
  • Rolling Stone declares that the best April Fools' Day prank award goes to College Humor, which teamed up with Sinbad to create fake footage from Shazaam, a 1990s movie in which Sinbad supposedly played a genie that tons of people remember seeing. Trouble is, the movie never actually existed. Until now, kinda. The footage is here.
  • New England got a very real April Fools' Day snowstorm, the AP reports.

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