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France. Robbing police vans, dropping cars, freeing animals from the zoo… These are not current records

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The ongoing protests and riots in French cities have resulted in recordings and photos allegedly showing these events being sent on social media. Some, however, have nothing to do with them – they are old materials, also from outside France.

After a police officer in Nanterre near Paris shot 17-year-old Nahel during a roadside check on June 27, protests in France intensified – riots broke out in the streets, burning cars increased, looting and even attacks on citizens began. The events covered many cities, there were fights with the police. What is happening on the Seine is reflected on social media: many photos and videos of these events are circulating. However, not all of them are authentic and up to date. We warn against disseminating them, because they are classic fake news whose authors take advantage of the situation by playing on emotions. Below we verify those that have appeared in Polish social media in recent days.

“France today”? No, it’s a still from a French film

A photo of a speeding French police van has become popular – three young men are standing in the sliding side door of the vehicle, shouting and gesticulating. Another is leaning out of the window next to the driver’s seat, holding what appears to be a gun in his hand. There are also three masked figures: one is standing on the rear bumper of a speeding vehicle, the other is sitting on the roof and holding the French flag. The third person on the motorcycle next to him is showing off by riding only on the rear wheel.

The photo was shared on Twitter with a description suggesting that it depicts the current scene: “#France today … If anyone else talks about accepting refugees from Africa, he should really rethink his life. nothing changes in them. And that’s good” (original spelling of all posts). The tweet was accompanied by the hashtags #FranceOnFire, #FranceProtest, #FranceRiots. The post has 6.4 thousand. views.

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Misleading tweet from July 2, 2023: the photo is a frame from a videoTwitter

However, this tweet is misleading. Photography has nothing to do with current events. It’s a still from a French filmAthena” from 2022. He determined is a team of BBC Verify journalists. The scene from which the frame comes can be viewed on YouTube – recording published in September 2022.

Riots in France? No, a movie set in the US

Another post referring to the protests in France contains a 16-second video that shows several cars falling out of a multi-storey car park. As the cars hit the street, fireballs appear, and a woman’s scream is heard in the background. In the left part of the frame you can see the black and red logo of Avia.pro – a Russian website. At the end of the video, there is a photo purporting to be of French President Emmanuel Macron sitting in front of a street on fire – it looks like this image was created using AI.

“July 14 in France is another anniversary of the fall of the Bastille. Until then, the riots will certainly be in full swing. The American services will definitely prepare something hot for the French” – we read in a July 2 tweet with the hashtag #FranceRiots. It has been viewed nearly 20,000 times. times.

Misleading tweet from July 2, 2022: This is promotional material for an American filmTwitter

July 1st same video published on the Telegram channel of the Russian portal Avia.pro. His description there reads: “Supposedly, filming for the new Fast and the Furious has already started in France, and without any costs related to special effects. The frames are no different” (editor’s translation).

Meanwhile, the video has nothing to do with France and the ongoing protests. This material has been circulating on the Internet for seven years. As determined BBC Verify, appeared online for the first time in June 2016. Its author argued that the recording came from the set of the movie “Fast and Furious 8”, which was shot in Cleveland, Ohio. The video shows a multi-storey car park at Prospect Avenue East in Cleveland.

One of promotional materials The film “Fast and the Furious 8”, published on June 10, 2016, shows the backstage of the scene where the cars fall out of a multi-story building – the same as in the video now being used to mislead.

Zebra ‘freed by rebels’ in France? No, these are old records

“Now freed lions and zebras are running around in France after rebels opened a zoo,” an anonymous Twitter user wrote July 2. As proof, he posted a 30-second cluster of three recordings. First we see a zebra galloping down the middle of a lit street. The situation was recorded by a person driving a car behind the animal. Then there is a shot also from a car, but on a different street, in the frame you can barely see the silhouettes of animals that cross the road. The last, shortest shot shows two figures in balaclavas, one holding a flashlight – the frame changes and we see an elephant illuminated by a flashlight. French is heard in the background of each of these poor quality films. The tweet with this recording was viewed 1.2 thousand times. times

Misleading tweet from July 2, 2023: the video is a plywood of three old recordings Twitter

The video of the zebra running down the street is not current – it was circulating on social media, with commentary in French, from April 11, 2020. As reviewed by the editors Liberation, Two days later, an article appeared inLe Parisien”: described the peculiar visits of various animals, there was the zebra video just mentioned in it. The daily reported that two days earlier the zebra and two ponies had been filmed on the outskirts of Paris. “The animals escaped from a neighboring circus after their enclosure was opened,” Le Parisien reported.

A video of a zebra that escaped from a circus has been circulating online since 2020Twitter

The second video is also old – it appeared in a plywood of recordings, which is from February 2020 available among others on YouTube. The title is: “Lions roam unattended at night in Saint Denis” – Saint Denis is a town and commune near Paris. The source of the last plywood recording in the tweet, the one with the elephant, we have not been able to determine.

“Rioters steal rifles from police vans”? The video is from a year ago

In the context of the riots in France, Internet users also share a recording of a masked armed man on the roof of a building. The video also shows him aiming at nearby cars and a standing group of three people dressed in black. At the bottom of the video is an inscription in French: “With you in position.”

On June 30, the video was posted by one of the English-speaking Twitter users. On the same day he made them available polish user. In the content of the post, he included a Polish translation of the original post: “Muslim rioters are now stealing rifles from police vans and rooftop hideouts like snipers. How far does it have to go before EU ‘leaders’ dare to speak out and stop uncontrolled immigration?” However, the content of the post and the video are misleading.

Misleading tweet from June 30, 2023: it’s a movie from 2022 Twitter

The video has been available on the Internet for over a year. The earliest version was posted on Twitter March 13, 2022. “The video was probably shot on the roof of a residential tower in the eastern suburbs of Paris, but it was impossible to confirm whether the rifle was real or a replica” – – assessed BBC Verify journalists who analyzed the recording.

The recording was published in March 2022 Twitter

Author:Gabriela Sieczkowska

Main photo source: Twitter

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