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Fact check: Ukraine President’s old images getting viral as recent in Ukraine crisis context

The pictures of Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy used by the media website ABP Live and also by various social media users are not recent they are from the year 2021.

  • By Vishvas News
  • Updated: February 27, 2022

Vishvas News (New Delhi): In the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war which began on 24 February, 2022 Ukrainian forces battled Russian invaders on three sides on Thursday after Moscow mounted an assault by land, sea and air in the biggest attack on a European state since the second World War. However amidst the battle, misinformation around the same too is going viral.
In one such case, Vishvas News found an article being shared on https://www.abplive.com/ old pictures of Ukraine President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy which are going viral with recent claims.

Claim:
Vishvas News found several posts on social media, which consisted of pictures of Ukraine president in the military attire.

Nasser F Ayuob posted on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/516143105/posts/10158621704458106/?d=n

Another Facebook user too shared a post in Punjabi with similar claim:

https://www.facebook.com/107884398208006/photos/a.109408194722293/246317571031354/?type=3

Twitter user Oládòkun Eniolá Oluwapelumi, posted the picture with similar claims.

Twitter user Rajesh Chhetri too shared the pictures with claim: Brave person; Ukraine President Himself landed on the landmark of War. 💥💥 #UkraineRussia

https://twitter.com/RaajChhetri07/status/1497229222523568128/photo/2

An article published by ABP Live on 24 Feb 2022 titled, ‘जवानों के साथ युद्ध के मैदान पर उतरे यूक्रेन के राष्ट्रपति वलोडिमिर जेलेंस्की, सेना के लिबास में तस्वीरें वायरल‘ too showed Ukraine President along with countries soldiers. The pictures were shared without a caption.

Investigation:
Vishvas News conducted an investigation on the three pictures of Ukraine President used in the article one after the other carried on the website of ABP Live.

Image 1:

Vishvas News started its investigation with a simple Google Reverse Image search.

We found the first picture shared on the website of Financial Times, in an article titled, ‘Ukraine president fights oligarch on home front as Russia threat looms’ published on December 19, 2021.

The caption said: Rinat Akhmetov, Ukrainian businessman and oligarch, left, and Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky © FT Montage/AFP/Getty/EPA

Now, Vishvas News searched these images on the website of Getty Images with relevant keywords.

We found the first picture on the Getty Images website. According to the caption it was from December 06, 2021.
The caption said: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visits the front-line positions of the Ukrainian military in Donbass, Ukraine on December 06, 2021. (Photo by Ukrainian Presidency / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Image 2:

We ran another Google Reverse Image Search and found the second picture posted on China Daily on April 10, 2021.

The caption said: Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky visits positions of armed forces near the frontline in Donbass region, Ukraine, on Thursday. UKRAINIAN PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SERVICE/REUTERS

Image 3:

Vishvas News followed similar steps for the third picture and found it on Getty Images.

Caption was: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visits the front-line positions of Ukrainian military in Donbass, Ukraine on December 06, 2021. (Photo by Ukrainian Presidency / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Image 4:

We found the image four after doing a Google Reverse Image search in an article on Kyiv Post.

The caption in the image was: This handout picture taken and released by Ukrainian Presidential Press Service on April 8, 2021 shows Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the frontline near Zolote, Luhansk region, eastern Ukraine.

All the four pictures used in the article are not recent and belong to 2021.

We also did a Google Reverse Image Search on the pictures being shared by social media users.

We found the viral image on Reuters article, titled, ‘Ukraine’s Zelenskiy to Putin: Meet me for peace talks in conflict zone’ The caption in the image said:
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy visits positions of armed forces near the frontline with Russian-backed separatists in Donbass region, Ukraine April 9, 2021. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS

This indicated that all the images being circulated of Ukraine President in military uniform are from the year 2021.
Also Vishvas News did not find any news article supporting the claim that the Ukraine President was fighting war alongside the troops.

Vishvas News spoke to journalist in Ukraine Liz Cookman who confirmed that Ukraine President is not out on field alongside his troops at this very moment.

Conclusion: The pictures of Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy used by the media website ABP Live and also by various social media users are not recent they are from the year 2021.

  • Claim Review : Recent Pictures of Ukraine President
  • Claimed By : Nasser F Ayuob
  • Fact Check : Misleading
Misleading
Symbols that define nature of fake news
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