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The claim: Image shows COVID-19 protest in France taken in 2021
After French President Emmanuel Marcon announced proof of a coronavirus vaccination or a negative test result would be required to enter public events and venues, residents took the streets to protest the new measure.
Some widely shared photos circulating on Facebook claim to show the recent gatherings.
“GREECE FRANCE CUBA PROTEST WORLD WIDE,” reads a July 16 Facebook post with more than 600 shares. “This is what the msm is hidding (sic) from us, they fear the day when we will discover how many we are and that WE ARE THE POWER.”
Accompanying the text is a series of images, including one of a crowd of protesters on the Champs-Elysees in Paris with colorful smoke flares and waving French flags.
On July 13, a Facebook page shared the same photo with the caption: “Following Macron's announcements last night, French citizens reacted strongly and the hashtag "Gilets Jaunes" (Yellow Vests) has been trending for several hours.”
USA TODAY reached out to the Facebook users for comment.
Similar versions of the claim have also made their way to Twitter, where one user wrote, “France rejects lockdown tyranny.”
But the photo was actually taken in November 2018 during a protest in France about fuel tax increases.
Photo is from 2018
With a Google reverse image search, independent fact-checking organizations discovered that the photo circulating online originates from a Daily Mail article published in November 2018 about demonstrations in France against fuel price hikes.
The image was captured by photographer Oliver Coret and was published on Divergence Images with the caption, “Demonstration of the Yellow Vests on the Champs-Elysees, Paris on November 24, 2018.”
Protesters wore yellow vests, “gilets jaunes,” named after what French motorists had to carry in their vehicles in case of a breakdown, according to the Guardian.© Zakaria Abdelkafi, AFP/Getty Images Protesters wearing yellow vests (gilets jaunes) take part in a demonstration on the Champs Elysees Avenue by the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, on Dec. 15, 2018, to protest against rising costs of living they blame on high taxes.
At the time, people were protesting against a tax increase on diesel fuel, but the demonstrations later turned into calls for higher wages, lower taxes and more.
While the photo was not taken recently, Macron's measure to increase vaccinations sparked criticism and protests.
On July 17, over 100,000 people protested in France against the government’s handling of COVID-19, the Associated Press reported.
Our rating: False
An image claiming to show COVID-19 related protests in France taken in 2021 is FALSE, based on our research. The photo is from a 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes where protesters wore yellow vests.
Our fact-check sources:
- Reuters, July 16, Fact Check-Photo shows 2018 protests in France, not 2021
- Daily Mail, Nov. 24, 2018, Paris is BURNING: Huge bonfires are lit on the Champs Elysee in Paris as police blast thousands of people with water cannon and tear gas as they protest proposed fuel hikes
- Divergence Images, Nov. 24, 2018, Reportage: Gilets Jaunes/Champs-Elysees
- The Guardian, Nov. 16, 2018, 'Gilets juanes' protesters threaten to bring France to a standstill
- BBC, Dec. 15, 2018, France 'yellow vest' protesters defy government to gather
- Associated Press, July 17, France: Thousands protest against vaccination, COVID passes
- NPR, Dec. 3, 2018, Who Are France's Yellow Vest Protesters, And What Do They Want?
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Our fact-check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Viral image depicts 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes
Source : https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/fact-check-viral-image-depicts-2018-protest-in-france-about-fuel-tax-hikes/ar-AAMpeF08680