This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake

Many have shared these photos on social media claiming that they show the havoc coronavirus has wreaked in Italy.

Published
WebQoof
4 min read
Many have shared these photos on social media claiming that they show the havoc coronavirus has wreaked in Italy.
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CLAIM

Several photos of people covered in blankets sitting on the roadside, hospital patients carrying babies and groups of people pushing incubators with babies inside are going viral as from Italy.

Many people have shared these photos on social media claiming that they show the havoc coronavirus has wreaked on Italy’s healthcare system, forcing people on the streets.

“This is Italy. There is no more space in the hospitals. Think twice before you put your foot outside the house,” the viral message accompanying the photos reads.

An archived version of the post can be seen <a href="http://archive.is/wip/7fC3E">here</a>.
An archived version of the post can be seen here.
(Source: Facebook)

Many others shared the same post on Facebook.

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/Facebook)
This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/Facebook)

Postcard News co-founder Mahesh Hegde and Akali Dal spokesperson Manjinder Singh Sirsa also shared the same photos without any context, making it seem that this had happened because of the effect of coronavirus.

An archived version of the tweet can be found <a href="http://archive.is/wip/AhT6l">here</a>.
An archived version of the tweet can be found here.
(Source: Twitter)
An archived version of the tweet can be found <a href="http://archive.is/wip/PVPgK">here</a>.
An archived version of the tweet can be found here.
(Source: Twitter)
An archived version of the tweet can be found <a href="http://archive.is/wip/9tqSF">here</a>.
An archived version of the tweet can be found here.
(Source: Twitter)
This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake

(Click here for live updates on COVID-19. Also visit Quint Fit for comprehensive coverage on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.)

TRUE OR FALSE?

The claim with the pictures is false. While these photos are both real and recent, they are actually from Croatia’s capital Zagreb, which was rocked by a powerful earthquake on 22 March.

The earthquake left one teenager and sixteen other people injured, including another minor who was badly hurt, and the 5.3 magnitude quake caused fires and power blackouts in parts of the capital, Reuters reported.

This came amid the lockdown in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic.

WHAT WE FOUND

On conducting a reverse search on the photos, we found many people on Twitter saying that they were from Zagreb, the capital city of Croatia, in the aftermath of the earthquake.

On looking through news reports, we found that Croatia suffered a strong earthquake on Sunday which caused panic, the evacuation of hospitals and widespread damage including to the capital's iconic cathedral, amid the partial coronavirus lockdown, according to Al Jazeera.

Marijana Petir, the Republic of Croatia’s representative in the European Parliament, took to Twitter in the aftermath of the quake to share some photos and pray for the country.

Two of these photos – the women carrying their babies and the men with incubators – are among those that are viral as Italy.

Martin & Valent Sinković, two athlete brothers from Croatia also shared more photos, including the above two.

Moreover, we found all the viral photos in the below post on Twitter, which also said that they were from Zagreb.

On looking for the photos in news reports, we found some results.

Photo 1

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Facebook)

We found the above photo in a news report by ABC, which stated that the photo showed new mothers being evacuated from a maternity ward in Zagreb.

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/ABC)

Photo 2

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Facebook)

We found many tweets saying that the Bad Blue Boys, an ultras group which support the Croatian football club GNK Dinamo Zagreb and Futsal Dinamo, helped move incubators after the earthquake.

We also found a video of the same on Twitter and one on the news website The Independent.

We also found a similar photo on Associated Press.

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/Associated Press)

Photo 3

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Facebook)

We found the same photo on Croatian news website Total Croatia News.

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/Total Croatia News)

Photo 4

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Facebook)

We found this photo in a news article about the quake by a website called Vrisak.info that was shared on Twitter by author and journalist Ian Fraser.

This is Not Corona-Hit Italy, the Photos are of Croatia Earthquake
(Photo: Screenshot/Vrisak.info)

Therefore, it is clear that the photos are not from Italy at all, but from Croatia, and shows the effect not of coronavirus but an earthquake. However, that is not to say that Croatia is not feeling the effects of COVID-19. As of 27 March, Croatia has 495 positive cases in total and three deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins tracker. The country is also under partial lockdown, according to news reports.

You can read all our coronavirus related fact-checked stories here.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9643651818, or e-mail it to us at webqoof@thequint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)

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