FACT CHECK: Did Boris Johnson Have A Black Eye While Speaking At A COVID-19 Briefing?

Elias Atienza | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook purportedly shows a BBC News segment where U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has a black eye.

Verdict: False

The video has been digitally altered. The original video does not show Johnson with a black eye or any visible injury.

Fact Check:

Johnson announced all remaining coronavirus restrictions in England would be lifted on July 19, despite a recent surge in COVID-19 cases, according to the Associated Press. The country began slowly lifting restrictions in March, starting with reopening schools, the outlet reported.

Now, a video on Facebook seemingly shows a news segment aired on BBC News of Johnson speaking with a black eye. The video was first shared on TikTok July 12 and has over 35,000 likes and 6,100 comments. (RELATED: Does This Photo Show Boris Johnson With Ghislaine Maxwell?)

The video, however, appears to have been doctored to include the black eye. Check Your Fact found the original video posted on YouTube by BBC on July 12. In the original segment, Johnson is shown speaking at a press conference about England removing the last of the COVID-19 restrictions, and he does not have a black eye.

If Johnson actually gave a press briefing while having a black eye, media outlets likely would have reported on it, yet none have. In 2011, when Johnson was the mayor of London, the Evening Standard reported he showed up to vote with a black eye he received after hitting a security barrier headfirst while cycling.

Over 1,200 scientists signed a letter to The Lancet criticizing Johnson’s plan to lift COVID-19 restrictions on July 19, calling the decision a “dangerous and unethical experiment,” according to The Guardian.

Elias Atienza

Fact Check Reporter
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