Mossack Fonseca Panama Papers
Panama-based law firm, Mossack Fonseca, has been hit by a massive leak of confidential documents Rodrigo Arangua/AFP/Getty

Newspapers and broadcasters were quick to pick up the Panama Papers that detail over 11 million documents leaked from the Panamanian offshore law firm Mossack Fonseca, allegedly stating how it helped wealthy clients exploit secretive, offshore tax regimes.

Along with Russian president, Vladimir Putin, other world leaders including 72 current or former heads of state, have been embroiled, alongside despots accused of rifling funds from their nations.

In France, Le Monde – one of the papers that had access to the leaked documents –based their coverage on an ICIJ report which focused on the personalities behind the bank accounts. Public figures such as former minister, Jérôme Cahuzac, mayor Patrick Balkany and Franco-Israeli businessman Patrick Drahi were implicated.

Le Monde also looked at allegations involving close associates of President Vladimir Putin, in an article entitled: 'Panama papers': offshore finance, the 'cash machine' of Putin's clan.

Icelandic press highlights 'people's fury'

In Iceland, pressure is mounting for the island's Prime Minister, Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, to resign after allegations that he hid a reported major financial conflict-of-interest from voters. The online Iceland Review, for instance, stated the leader as being "in deep trouble" amid the "public's fury" at the "great controversy".

The sons of two prominent Ghanaians – former President John Kufour and former UN Secretary –General, Kofi Annan – appear on the list, but this fact was omitted in news stories published by MyJoyOnline and Ghana Web, the nation's most visited websites. The Ghanaian outlets tended to focus on the Russian and Icelandic connections.

South Africa's largest digital publisher, News24, highlighted how the leak's South African connection "drew the crosshairs" on President Jacob Zuma's nephew Khulubuse Zuma, who "has been thrust into the spotlight again".

Chinese press overlooks the leak

The Indian Express published a series of articles dubbed #PanamaPapersIndia, where the newspaper outlined the rich Indians who had allegedly "knocked on a Panama door", including one of Mumbai's best known business clans, the Garware family.

In neighbouring Pakistan, after the family of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was implicated, Urdu broadcaster Samaa claimed that the country's National Accountability Bureau "should shut down its institution, if it's unable to take action".

In China, the families of at least eight current and former members of the supreme ruling politburo were linked to the offshore companies. The "state-run" China Daily made no mention of the leaks on its home page.

Monssack Fonseca China
A screenshot of China Daily's home page on 4 April 2016, where there was no mention of the leak. China Daily

Singapore's daily broadsheet, the Straits Times published an article looking at how the 'leak boosts Panama's image as hub for money laundering', quoting Panama's Foreign Minister and Vice-President, Isabel De Saint Malo.

Argentina: Focus on president rather than Messi

In Brazil, Folha de Sao Paulo linked the revelations back to the nation's largest-ever graft investigation dubbed 'Lava Jato', in which personalities close to President Dilma Rousseff and Mossack Fonseca are being probed.

Further south in Argentina, birthplace of superstar footballer Lionel Messi – also cited in the leaks – the press extensively exposed the offshore holdings of a number of world leaders, including the nation's president, Mauricio Macri.

In one of its articles, the daily Buenos Aires Herald made the point: "While the president's name was just one of many in ICIJ's investigation, Latin American reporters and part of the European press stressed Macri's presence on par with that of other key heads of state such as Russia's Vladimir Putin or the UK's David Cameron."

It is unsurprising that most of the Russian media appeared guarded, and less emphasis was put on the activities of Putin's clan. The Russian's PM's name was not mentioned in government-funded TV network Russia Today's: Panama Papers: German paper publishes 'biggest leak in history' on corruption explainer.

All of those implicated in the ICIJ Panama Papers report have been afforded the opportunity to respond: Visit the ICIJ website to read the responses.