Social media users are claiming a viral video shows an explosion in Ukraine after Russian forces invaded.
A Facebook post shared Feb. 23 shows a massive ball of fire exploding in the air and witnesses making a commotion in the background.
“Explosion in ukraine (sic) today by the Russians,” reads the caption of the post.
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Similar claims have spread recently on Facebook. An 8-minute livestream that generated over 1,700 interactions and 800 shares shows several scenes of this explosion looped in with other footage. A Feb. 24 tweet with the same video and claim amassed over 42,000 views.
But the claim is false, as independent fact-checking organizations have reported. The video shows an explosion in China that took place in 2015.
USA TODAY reached out to the social media users who shared the claim for comment.
The video in the Facebook post shows one out of a series of explosions that occurred at Tianjin, an industrial city in China, on Aug. 12, 2015. American survivor Dan Van Duren captured the video, which can be found on NBC News, BBC News and The Guardian.
The explosions, which started in a chemical warehouse, tore through the port of Tianjin, damaged surrounding infrastructure and killed 173 people, according to The Guardian.
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Chinese investigators discovered that an “improperly stored” chemical in the warehouse caught fire and sparked the blasts, according to The New York Times. The chairman of Ruihai Logistics, the company in charge of the warehouse, was charged with evading safety regulations, BBC News reported.
This is one of many videos that has been misidentified as footage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in recent days. USA TODAY also debunked claims that a viral video shows Russian jets flying over Kyiv and that an image showed another explosion in Ukraine.
Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim that a video shows an explosion in Ukraine. The video shows an explosion at a chemical warehouse in an industrial city in China. It was captured by an American survivor in 2015.
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