Claim: A Facebook group shared 10 photographs, which it said were about the killing and brutalising of civilians in Obigbo, a community in Rivers State.
Verdict: False. The claim is not true as the pictures have been traced to incidents in other states as well as in a different country.
Biafra Today, a group on Facebook that is “all about Biafra and latest news,” shared 10 pictures on Sunday, November 1, which it said were about extrajudicial killings in Obigbo (Oyigbo), a town in Rivers State.
“Nigerian Military unleashing terror on innocent Obigbo civilians under the guise of fishing out IPOB [Indigenous People of Biafra] family members on the orders of #govwikethemurderer,” it captioned the post.
“According to a report, hundreds have been killed and their bodies taken away as residents flee their homes while the media is silent on this massacre. We will never forget!!”
The post was shared 835 times, liked by 283 Facebook users, and had 130 comments as of 1 pm on Friday.
A study of the comments revealed that the vast majority of those who engaged with the post believed the pictures to be genuine. “Please send more proof, the UN [United Nations] must see this,” Lord Federal wrote, while another person criticised mainstream news outlets for being purveyors of fake news.
Soldiers had in October invaded the Obigbo community to, according to the authorities, recover stolen weapons and capture criminals who killed six officials of the Nigerian Army. Their involvement has, however, been found to have led to the extrajudicial killing of unarmed residents.
HumAngle ran reverse image searches on all 10 pictures and discovered that none of them was shot during the tragic event in Obigbo.
The first picture, according to reverse image search results on TinEye, first appeared online when it was uploaded by Darak Online as far back as August 16, 2011. According to Getty Images, a supplier of stock images, the picture was taken by AFP photographer, Sia Kambou. It shows a soldier of the Republican Forces in Cote d’Ivoire (FRCI) “as he entered a house on April 27, 2011, in Abidjan during an attack against a militia group that helped drive former President Laurent Gbagbo from power”.
READ THE FULL REPORT HERE: