Image from 2015 Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris falsely shared as shooting in Nigeria

By: Rohith Gutta
July 7 2023

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Image from 2015 Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris falsely shared as shooting in Nigeria



The Verdict False

The image is from an attack on the Charlie Hebdo office in Paris in January 2015. It has no connection with Nigeria.

Claim ID d189d63d


A Twitter user shared an image on July 3, 2023, claiming it shows “heavy gunshot” in Owerri, near Ihiagwa. Owerri is the capital city of the State of Imo, Nigeria. The image shows two armed men standing beside a car in the middle of the road. An archive of the post can be found here

However, the image is not from the shooting in Owerri. 

In Fact

On researching, we found the original photo was a screengrab from footage of an attack on the Charlie Hebdo office in Paris on January 7, 2015. 

According to a timeline of the events provided by The Guardian on January 9, 2015, two armed men stormed the Charlie Hebdo magazine office on January 7, 2015. Twelve people were killed in the building, including the magazine’s editor, a staff cartoonist, and a police officer. 

According to a report published by Reuters, three attackers went on a gunfire rampage from January 7-9, 2015, nearly a decade after the magazine published cartoons on Prophet Muhammed. One of the assailants stated the attacks were carried out in the name of the Islamic State.

From an update added on December 16, 2020, Reuters noted that three attackers were involved in the incident. Two of the attackers were brothers and were responsible for the death of those in the Charlie Hebdo building on January 7, 2015. The other attacker killed a police woman and four Jewish hostages the following day in a kosher supermarket in Paris on June 9, 2015. All three attackers were shot dead by the police on January 9, 2015, in separate standoffs. In December 2020, a French court convicted 14 people accused of being accomplices in the attack. 

The timeline report in The Guardian carried a screen grab titled, “Gunmen flee the Offices of Charlie Hebdo Magazine in Paris,” credited to Reuters TV. This is the same screen grab as in the now-viral tweet.

Additionally, the YouTube channel of The Guardian carried a 35-second video clip of the shooting on January 7, 2015. At 0:02 time stamp, we can see the same image of two masked armed men exiting from the car and shooting in the same direction. We can also see that the car's front doors were left open. 

There are no news reports of any recent gun fighting or shooting in Owerri, Nigeria. 

The Verdict

A screen grab from the video of the attack on the Charlie Hebdo Magazine offices in Paris on January 7, 2015, has been falsely attributed to gunfighting in Owerri in Nigeria. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false. 

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

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