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HomeFact checkViralViral Video Showing Violent Clash Between Police And Citizens Is From Barcelona,...

Viral Video Showing Violent Clash Between Police And Citizens Is From Barcelona, Not France

A video showing people running down a street as they were being chased by the police has been widely shared on social media platforms in the last two weeks. Users have attributed this video to police action in France. 

https://www.facebook.com/HNN24x7/videos/1345590402471361

Many other users have shared this claim on Facebook. 

Fact Check/ Verification 

A reverse image search of keyframes from the video on Yandex.com led us to a Youtube video posted on 1 November 2020. Titled, “Only in 2020: Pianist keeps on playing the piano in the middle of a full-blown anti-lockdown riot,” the video received over 16,000 views.  

“Only in 2020: Like a scene taken out of “Titanic” where, according to the legend, the band kept on playing while the ship was sinking, a man kept on playing the piano in a surreal chaotic scene during a fierce anti-lockdown riot in Barcelona, Spain on Friday 30 October 2020,” reads the video’s description. 

Broadcaster Ciara King shared the video of a man playing the piano as well. 

Global News, Ruptly, The Telegraph, and Daily Mail reported on the anti-lockdown riots in Barcelona. 

We found the backdrop in the claim’s video and footage reported by media organisations to have similar visuals. So we looked at Google street view images of the riot’s location and compared it to visuals reported by the media. 

Left: Google Street View image of 61 Carrer de Ferran;  Right: AFP's photograph via Getty Images
Left: Google Street View image of 61 Carrer de Ferran; Right: AFP’s photograph via Getty Images

We also compared a keyframe of the viral video and a Google street view of 8 Via Laietana, Barcelona, Catalonia and found it to be similar.  

Left: Keyframe from viral video;  Right: Google street view image of 8 Via Laietana, Barcelona
Left: Keyframe from viral video; Right: Google Street View image of 8 Via Laietana, Barcelona

These violent riots erupted after prime minister Pedro Sánchez declared a six-month state of emergency in Spain in response to the coronavirus pandemic. “The state of emergency also permits Spain’s regional governments to bring in full or partial lockdowns, and limits public and private gatherings to six people,” reads The Guardian

Conclusion 

The video of police clashing with protesters on the street is from Barcelona, not France. These anti-lockdown protests erupted after a six-month state of emergency was declared in Spain. 

Result: Misplaced Context

Our Sources

Youtube user: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JlzhTiCBZ0&feature=youtu.be

Ciara King: https://twitter.com/iamCiaraKing/status/1323211194052857856?s=20

Global News: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH8J7QwVxgs

Ruptly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sp0manbTTEg

The Telegraph: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFkPgq5f_uw

Daily Mail: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCqnSLt_uHM

The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/nov/01/spain-pm-calls-calm-after-violent-anti-lockdown-protests


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Nikita Vashisth
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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