Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Fuel Depot In Ternopil, Ukraine, On Fire, Hit By Russians

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  • Авторство: Maria Michela D'Alessandro
Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Fuel Depot In Ternopil, Ukraine, On Fire, Hit By Russians Not Ternopil

Does a video circulating on social media show a fuel depot on fire in Ternopil, Ukraine, hit by Russians on May, 13, 2023? No, that's not true: the clip had appeared online months before, in January 2023, and it shows explosions from a drone attack on an Iranian ammunition depot in Isfahan.

The claim was found on social media after the Ukrainian city of Ternopil came under fire from Russian missiles on the night of May 13, 2023. Ternopil Oblast Governor Volodymyr Trush, writing on Telegram, said the strike had hit warehouses owned by commercial enterprises and a religious organisation, injuring two people.

Numerous videos were uploaded on TikTok showing the same footage, all claiming to be showing Ternopil, Ukraine, but giving different, false informations: a video (archived here) opens with the graphic, in Russian:

Тернополь. Россияне во что-то серьезное попали. Oчередной склад боеприпасов и хранения вооружения ВСУ.

Translated by Lead Stories staff into English, the text reads:

Ternopil. The Russians got into something serious. Another ammunition and weapons storage of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

Screenshot 2023-05-19 at 15.26.44.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri May 19 13:08:14 2023 UTC)

Other videos claim that the explosion happened on May, 13, 2023.

This is not true: A reverse image search performed by Lead Stories shows that the video was published at the end of January 2023 and does not refer to Ternopil, Ukraine (it was first uploaded on the Iranian website Tabnak on January, 29, 2023). The footage shared on social media can be seen at the 00:31 mark in this video, which has nothing to do with Ternopil: It shows a massive explosion after drones attacked a military factory in Isfahan, Iran.

  Maria Michela D'Alessandro

Maria Michela D'Alessandro is a fact-checker for Lead Stories and a bilingual journalist for Euronews, she’s now resident at the Rome bureau office.

She was born and raised in Rome but studied and worked as a freelancer in Russia, the United States, Germany, Finland, Italy. Her printed and on-air works have been published in The Moscow Times, Al Jazeera, Euronews, The Globe Post, CGTN Europe, La7, Il Caffè Weekly, Il Corriere della Sera. She gained a double master’s degree in international journalism from Free University Berlin and Saint Petersburg State University.

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