FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show Russian Paratroopers Landing In Ukraine?

Elias Atienza | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook claims to show Russian paratroopers landing in Ukraine.

Verdict: Misleading

While the video does show Russian paratroopers, the footage predates the recent invasion of Ukraine by many years. There is no evidence it shows Russian paratroopers landing in Ukraine.

Fact Check: 

Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine early Thursday morning, according to The New York Times. Amid the fighting, Russian airborne troops reportedly captured an airbase near the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv, CNN reported.

A video being shared on Facebook shows what appears to be hundreds of soldiers jumping from planes and parachuting to the ground below, with some claiming it shows Russian paratroopers landing in Ukraine. “Russian military paratroopers landing in Ukraine,” reads the caption of one such post.

While the video does appear to show Russian paratroopers, it was not taken during the Russian invasion of Ukraine. A reverse image search revealed the video was posted to Twitter in September 2016. “Landing under #[Rostov],” reads the tweet.

The video was also posted on Facebook in September 2016 by the “Made in Russia” Facebook page, which claims it was taken in the Rostov region of Russia in 2014. (RELATED: Does This Video Show Ukrainian Police Declining To Enforce COVID-19 Lockdowns And Mandates?)

“Massive air ‘desant’ of Russian VDV airborne troops (around 2000 paratroopers) in Rostov region from 17 Ilyushin Il-76 aircraft. Each Il-76 can take 126 paratroopers (‘desantnik’). Year 2014,” reads the caption accompanying the Facebook post.

The video may stem from a 2014 training exercise in which 15,000 Russian paratroopers jumped from planes and landed in the “Rostov Obslat region of Russia,” according to Military.com.

Elias Atienza

Fact Check Reporter
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