A video showing police officers apprehending a group of people at a metro station has gone viral with a claim that Muslims were arrested in a Paris metro for not wearing masks and spitting on people.
However, we found that the footage was from Bucharest, Romania and showed police arresting football fans who were allegedly involved in violence after a match.
One of the captions with the viral video reads, “In Paris Muslims without masks in Metro spit on the other passengers. See what police did to them.”
The video has been shared massively on Facebook with this caption.
Another caption written in Hindi reads, “पेरिस के मेट्रो में बिना मास्क के घुसे मुस्लिमों ने अन्य यात्रियों पर थूका। उसके बाद पुलिस ने जो किया, उसकी कल्पना भी नहीं की थी | ऐसे ही इलाज होना चाहिए यहाँ भी खूब थूक लगा लगाकर सब्जी बेचीं हैं इन लोगो ने|”
[Translation: Muslims entered the Paris Metro without a mask, and started spitting on other passengers. One can’t imagine what the police did with them. They should be treated like that here as well, they have sold vegetables by putting a lot of spit on it.]
A tweet with this caption was posted by Sandeep Thakur, social media and IT head of Bharatiya Janata Party’s Delhi unit.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
We broke down the video into keyframes using InVID WeVerify Google Chrome Extension and conducted a reverse image search of some keyframes.
While going through some of the results, we found another claim attached to the video that said, “These are UNITED NATIONS POLICE enforcing mask policy Romania. United Nations police are also currently supplementing the Victoria Police Force, right?”
People from Romania called out the false information in the tweet and said that the footage was taken during a clash between violent football fans and police.
We searched for news reports on confrontations between football fans and police at a subway station and found several reports from 2 October 2020 about a clash between the fans of FC Dinamo 1948 Bucharest and CSA Steaua București teams.
A report by Digisport, a Romanian sports channel, mentioned, “When the gendarmes (police) tried to separate the two groups and disperse them, the supporters came into conflict with the police. The group of Steaua supporters returned to the Ștefan cel Mare metro station and at the moment of driving the fans, two gendarmes were hit, requiring intervention to immobilise and detain the aggressors.”
The report carried screenshots from the same viral video.
Agerpres, the national news agency of Romania, had a detailed account from the day and added that around 30 people were arrested in the matter.
Evidently, a video from Romania was shared with a false claim that French police arrested Muslims in a Paris metro for not wearing masks and spitting on passengers.
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