Airstrike in Mekelle
One of the claims HaqCheck fact-checked last week was a Facebook post that reported that the Ethiopian government conducted an aerial strike in Mekelle in the middle of the night using drones. It posted two images to support the claim and alleged that Ayder Hospital was also bombarded during the drone attack.
However, HaqCheck confirmed that the images do not show a recent aerial bombardment in Mekelle.
The post came out amid the resumption of fighting between the Tigray People’s Liberation Front ( TPLF) and the Ethiopian government. On Aug 31, 2022, TPLF claimed that there was a drone attack in the middle of that night in Mekelle.
The first image of the Facebook post is found to be from Syria and was taken on Oct 18, 2014. This image was published by the VOA.
The second image which pictures a woman, a running person, the Mekelle Martyrs’ memorial monument, and an airplane is learned to be photoshopped.
A plane claimed to be shot down while transporting weapons for TPLF
After the Ethiopian government announced that it shot down a plane that entered the Ethiopian airspace carrying weapons to TPLF via Sudan, many false images with the same claim appeared.
Among these posts with false images were two Facebook posts that used two images.
The first image was shared by a Facebook page with a Tigrinya and English caption stating the Ethiopian Air Force shot down an airplane entering the Ethiopian airspace from Sudan loaded with arms for TPLF.
The second was shared on a Facebook account with a claim that Ethiopia downed a place that belonged to the country’s historical enemies transporting weapons to the TPLF through Sudan.
However, HaqCheck confirmed that the images it came across from the two Facebook posts don’t show the alleged plane shot down by Ethiopian Air Force when it intruded the Ethiopian airspace from Sudan to transport weapons to Tigray for TPLF forces.
The first image was found in a news story that reported a plane crashed in the Amra Valley of the state of Arizona in the US in March 2021. The image was published on the website with a description that the image shows the crushed plane and the picture was taken by the Pima County law enforcement agency.
The second image was shared on Twitter on May 4, 2020, with a claim that the image shows an Uzbekistan Mig-29 aircraft.
Hence HaqCheck refuted the images used to support the claim as FALSE.
Ethiopian and Eritrean forces launching attacks on TPLF via Adyabo
HaqCheck debunked an image-backed post on Facebook with a claim that the Ethiopian and Eritrean forces jointly launched fresh attacks against the TPLF-led forces via northwestern Tigray, Adyabo.
However, Haqcheck confirmed that the image doesn’t show Ethiopian and Eritrean troops recently launching fresh attacks through northwestern Tigray, Adiyabo.
The image is found to be old posted on Dec 20, 2021. The image was published on a website along with an article regarding the ongoing war in Ethiopia making it inaccurate with the supposed claim.
We recommend social media users be continuous of potentially false and misleading information. They should look for original sources of the information and additional information to cross-check controversial posts.
Social media content creators are urged to be responsible and refrain from disseminating false information.
The government and concerned authorities should also widen and secure full access to information for the media and for the wider public. They should provide timely and sufficient information.