Video of a Ukrainian girl confronting a Russian soldier is actually from Palestine
The original video is of Palestinian girl Ahed Tamimi confronting Israeli solider
Claim: An 8-year Ukrainian girl confronts a Russian soldier telling him to go back to his country.
Fact: The girl in the videos and photos is not Ukrainian, she is Palestinian citizen Ahed Tamimi who confronted an Israeli soldier in 2012 after her brother was arrested.
Fact or Fiction
On 27 February 2022, in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, video and photos started making rounds on social media claiming an 8-year-old Ukrainian girl confronted a Russian soldier. The images from the video were shared with the caption “WHAT A BRAVE LITTLE WOMAN: An 8-year Ukrainian girl confronts a Russian soldier telling him to go back to his country. This is courageous.” However, the photos and clips actually depict Palestinian girl Ahed Tamimi who was filmed in 2012 when she challenged and slapped an Israeli soldier for arresting her brother.
Soch Fact Check investigated the claim and found that the photos are from a 2012 video of a Palestinian girl that went viral at the time. She was later imprisoned for eight months time in December 2017 for slapping two Israeli soldiers in 2017 and has since then become a well-known activist, even receiving the Hanzala Courage Award by Başakşehir Municipality in Istanbul in 2012.
Soch Fact Check investigated the virality of the photos and found that the misleading photos were screenshotted from the original video and were shared here, here, here, here, here and here on 27 – 28 February 2022 and the video with the false headline was shared here, here, here and here on Facebook.
Soch Fact Check also conducted a CrowdTangle analysis for the last seven-day period (21 Feb – 27 Feb) using the following search terms:
- “Ukrainian girl telling a Russian soldier to go back to his country”
- “Ukrainian girl and Russian soldier”
The first search term turned up 268 Facebook posts that received close to 40,975 interactions. Similarly, the second search term received more than 74,000 interactions across 400 posts on Facebook.
Conclusion: The photos/videos claiming a Ukrainian girl challenging the Russian army are false and misleading. The video is actually from 2012 and depicts Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamini confronting an Israeli soldier. As Russia invades Ukraine, a number of, false and misleading photos have surfaced online.