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Prophet Muhammad’s Birth Anniversary Celebration Video Shared As Chechen Muslims Protesting Against France

Online users shared a video showing a massive gathering of people. Users have attributed this video to Chechen Muslims protesting against France and expressing their devotion to the Prophet. 

One such claim shared on 26 October reads, “Chechen Muslims protest against France And expressing devotion to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) #boycottfrance #FranceBoycott #ProphetMuhammadSAW”

The video was shared on Youtube as well with the same claim. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ks2XL9OUHf4

Fact Check/ Verification 

We performed a reverse image search of keyframes from the video on Yandex and found that the video had earlier been posted in 2019. 

A similar video was posted in December 2019 with the caption, “The Prophet’s birthday in Yemen tops Arab countries in mass mobilization – Waseem Al Sharabi reports”

A November 2019 Turkish media report titled, “Mevlid-i Nebi was welcomed with great enthusiasm in Islamic countries” included visuals from the video as photographs. 

The article read, “The anniversary of Prophet Muhammad’s birth to the world was greeted with great enthusiasm in Islamic countries. Hundreds of thousands of prophet lovers flocked to the squares, especially in Yemen and Tunisia.”

Prophet Muhammad's birth celebrations in Yemen, 2019 reported by Hur24.com
Prophet Muhammad’s birth celebrations in Yemen, 2019 reported by Hur24.com

Ruptly reported on Prophet Muhammad’s birth anniversary celebration in Yemen’s Sana’a in November 2019 as well. Their video includes visuals of the Al Saleh mosque, the same mosque shown in the claim’s video. 

Prophet Muhammad's birth celebrations in Yemen, 2019 reported by Ruptly
Prophet Muhammad’s birth celebrations in Yemen, 2019 reported by Ruptly

VOA News reported on the same with the caption, “Muslims in Yemen Celebrate Prophet Mohammad’s Birthday.” The Youtube video includes the same visuals from the claim’s video. 

Left: Image from viral video;   Right: Keyframe from Ruptly's 2019 video
Left: Image from viral video; Right: Keyframe from Ruptly’s 2019 video

Note that we couldn’t independently verify the video. 

The video and claims are shared amid heightened racial tensions in France after a French teacher was killed

Conclusion 

Our research makes it clear that the video in context is not related to Chechnya or France. The video shows Prophet Muhammad’s birth anniversary celebrations in Sana’a, Yemen in November 2019. 

Result: Misplaced Context

Our Sources

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e58ftolLgMk

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HHxkFp-R5xQ&feature=youtu.be&t=153

Hur24.com: https://www.hur24.com/islam-ulkelerinde-mevlid-i-nebi-buyuk-coskuyla-karsilandi-60252h.htm

Ruptly: https://www.ruptly.tv/en/videos/20191109-031

VOA News: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yntXzBG3iz8

Reuters: https://in.reuters.com/article/france-security/teacher-knifed-to-death-in-france-after-showing-class-cartoons-of-prophet-mohammad-idUSKBN2712MP


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Nikita Vashisth
Nikita is a writer and editor for English fact-checking. She also leads projects to understand the misinformation and fake-news ecosystem—with an emphasis on data and psychology. Previously, she has worked with IndiaSpend, CNN-News18 and written for Citizen Matters and Mongabay-India on the environment, health, and politics. She’s a postgraduate of the Computational Journalism program at Cardiff University, Wales.

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