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Video shows airstrike in Gaza, not explosion in Kabul

August 26, 2021 GMT

CLAIM: Video shows a second explosion outside Afghanistan’s Kabul airport on Thursday near Baron Hotel.

AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. This video shows an airstrike in Gaza and has circulated online for five days.

THE FACTS: Thursday’s bombing near the airport killed well over 100 Afghans and 13 U.S. service members, Afghan and U.S. officials said. It was the deadliest day for American forces in Afghanistan since August 2011.

As social media users began sharing photos and footage of the wreckage on Thursday, several old images and videos were shared as new.

One video showing an airstrike tinting a night sky orange in Gaza, which has appeared repeatedly online since at least Saturday, circulated widely with false claims it showed an explosion in Kabul.

#BREAKING : Second explosion hit Baron Hotel near #Kabul airport where Americans were rescued last week,” one Twitter user wrote alongside the video.

But the video shows an airstrike in Gaza, according to several news reports and social media posts with the video shared days before the Kabul attacks.

The open source intelligence network Aurora Intel and news outlets including Al Jazeera shared the photo online on Saturday with captions explaining it showed an Israeli airstrike in Gaza.

A spokesperson for the Israeli military also shared the video on Saturday, writing in a caption in Arabic that it showed warplanes raiding sites belonging to the Hamas militant group.

The Pentagon said Friday that there was just one suicide bomber — at the airport gate — not two, as U.S. officials initially said.

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This is part of AP’s effort to address widely shared misinformation, including work with outside companies and organizations to add factual context to misleading content that is circulating online. Learn more about fact-checking at AP.