Three people, including two Indian nationals were killed in an explosion near a major oil storage facility near the Abu Dhabi airport in UAE, in a suspected drone attack in Abu Dhabi by Houthi rebels. While several users posted videos of thick smoke rising from what appeared to be the site of the explosion, many others posted and shared old videos claiming to show the drone attack in Abu Dhabi.
Twitter user @anesmansory was among the users who posted the video claiming to show a drone attack in Abu Dhabi by Houthi rebels. His post received 57 retweets and 198 likes. Others including journalists and media houses also shared the tweet and posted the same video claiming to show a drone attack in Abu Dhabi.
Yemen’s armed rebel group, the Houthis, backed by Iran and active in northern Yemen have claimed responsibility for the alleged drone attack in Abu Dhabi. The attack comes days after a ship belonging to the UAE was seized by the Houthis. For context, the UAE is part of a Saudi lead alliance that is backing the government forces in Yemen to fight the Houthis. Yemen has been engulfed in a conflict between government forces led by President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi. Since March 2015, the Arab alliance, that includes Yemen, has been working with Hadi’s forces and has been conducting air, land and sea operations against the Houthis.
Newschecker skimmed through the comments associated with the video using Google translate. One of the users @Alialafariii posted a comment saying ‘Thedonkeys remains a donkey’ and shared a YouTube link of a major fire incident. On looking up the link, Newschecker found that it was from a major fire in Dubai’s Ajman market that happened in 2020.
We looked for more videos of the fire on YouTube and Twitter and found that several of the videos claiming to show the attack of the Houthi rebels on the Abu Dhabi airport were actually from the Dubai Ajman market fire from 2020.
For instance, user @AlhouthiAhmed tweeted a video which had two parts in it, claiming that it was from the recent drone Attack In Abu Dhabi. But Newschecker found the same video on YouTube from 2020, pegged to the Ajman market fire.
Several other users posted the same videos as seen in @AlhouthiAhmed’s tweet.
Another user @middleeasttime shared a different video, which shows a big set of buildings burning amidst a cityscape, quickly transitioning to another video where cars parked behind what appears to be a wide road, burning.
Newschecker found the same videos posted in 2020, again, identifying it as the Ajman market fire.
As was the previous case, several users posted the same videos claiming that they showed the drone attack in Abu Dhabi airport.
On further research, we found another tweet by user @SidqYemEn who identified the video to be from Abu Dhabi from 2015.
Using this as a clue, Newschecker conducted a keyword search on Twitter to find a tweet from Dubai based newspaper Khaleej Times carrying the same video. The incident is supposed to have occurred in November 2015.
The attached link in the article said that the incident took place in the warehouse of a supermarket in Abu Dhabi’s Mussafah Industrial Area and 6 workers were injured in the warehouse fire.
Newschecker further researched the same incident to find more videos of it on Twitter and YouTube.
There were also several media reports on the same. You can read them here, here and here.
Unrelated visuals of fire accidents from 2020 in Dubai and 2015 in Abu Dhabi shared as instances of recent drone attack in Abu Dhabi by Houthi rebels.
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