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Old Photograph From Gaza Shared as Scared Children in Afghanistan

We found that the photo was first shared in May 2021 during the attacks launched by Israel on Palestine.

Published
WebQoof
3 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>Fact-Check |&nbsp;An old photograph from Gaza was shared with a false claim that it showed Afghan children scare of gunfire in Kabul.</p></div>
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A photograph, showing two children covering their ears in fear, is being shared with a claim that it portrayed the situation in Kabul, Afghanistan amid the Taliban's aerial gunfire.

The photograph was shared shortly after celebratory gunfire from Taliban fighters was reported.

However, we found that the photograph of the children, which dates back to May, is from Gaza. It was taken during Israel's airstrikes on the besieged Gaza Strip earlier this year.

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CLAIM

The photograph was shared by a correspondent for Aghan-based TOLO News, Abdulhaq Omeri, who wrote "gunfire in #Kabul. #Afghanistan" in the caption. Omeri later deleted his tweet.

"Taliban’s aerial firing in #Kabul is causing panic & fear among Afghans, specially Kids. Our children have to go through trauma every other day since #Taliban take over in #Afghanistan (sic)," said Khalid Amiri, who works with Radio Television of Afghanistan (RTA).

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archive of the post can be found <a href="https://perma.cc/U2LP-U5Z4">here</a>.</p></div>

An archive of the post can be found here.

(Photo: Twitter/Screenshot)

The photograph was also shared by other social media users, archive links of which can be found here, here and here.

WHAT WE FOUND OUT

We found several social media users pointing out in the comments section of the tweets that the image was an old one from Gaza.

Taking a cue from the comments, we conducted a reverse image search of the photograph and found that the photo was shared by several Twitter and Facebook users since May.

While going through the posts, we found a tweet by one Tala Shurrab, which carried the same photograph. According to her Twitter bio, she is an MPhil student at Cambridge University.

In her tweet, which was posted on 12 May, Shurrab said, "my two little cousins aged 7 and 5 in #غزة terrified of the Israeli’s airstrikes. I don’t know what to say .. i really don’t .. Children in Ghazza are born to live through continuous and escalating trauma. (sic)"

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archive of the post can be found <a href="https://perma.cc/GSM4-ELZN">here</a>.</p></div>

An archive of the post can be found here.

(Photo: Twitter/Screenshot)

We noticed that the photograph posted by Shurrab was from wider angle, while other social media users had shared a cropped version of the photograph. We have reached out to Shurrab and the story will be updated as and when we hear from her.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan on 15 August after the capturing Kabul and seizing the Presidential Palace. The US troops exited Afghanistan on 31 August, following which there have been reports of celebratory gunfire in the capital.

Taliban leader and the spokesperson of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Zabihullah Mujahid, also sent out a tweet on 3 September asking the Taliban fighters to "avoid shooting bullets in the air".

Clearly, an old photograph from Gaza was shared with a false claim that it showed Afghan children scare of gunfire in Kabul.

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