FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show An Explosion Near The Kabul Airport?

Mecca Fowler | Contributor

A video shared on Facebook and Twitter purportedly shows an Aug. 26 explosion near the Baron Hotel in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Verdict: False

The video predates the Aug. 26 Kabul airport attack and appears to show Israeli airstrikes against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Fact Check:

Amid efforts to evacuate foreign citizens and at-risk Afghans from Afghanistan, a suicide bomber targeted the large crowds near Kabul’s airport on Thursday, according to The New York Times. The attack, which the Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan took credit for, killed 13 U.S. service members and over 90 Afghan nationals, Reuters reported.

Social media users have been falsely claiming footage of a large explosion on a city skyline at night depicts an explosion at the Baron Hotel in Kabul on Thursday. Though there were initial reports of a second blast at the hotel, the Pentagon said Friday that was not the case, according to USA Today.

A reverse image search of key frames from the video revealed it dates back to Aug. 21, several days before the Kabul airport terrorist attack. On Aug. 21, Al Jazeera Arabic posted a version of the footage to its Twitter account, with the caption roughly translating to: “The first scenes of the Israeli raids on the sites of the Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip.”

The Times of Israel also linked the footage to the Aug. 21 Israeli airstrikes in the Gaza Strip. The airstrikes that night targeted sites of the Palestinian militant group Hamas, according to Reuters. (RELATED: No, This Video Does Not Show The People Of Kabul Welcoming The Taliban Into The City)

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Friday that there were “specific, credible threats” to the airport in Kabul, USA Today reported. Despite concerns about potential future attacks, the U.S. is continuing evacuations from Afghanistan, according to the Associated Press.

Mecca Fowler



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