Old video of pro-Palestinian protests in Norway shared as clip from Columbia University

By: Umme Kulsum
May 2 2024

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Old video of pro-Palestinian protests in Norway shared as clip from Columbia University

Screenshot of posts showing a pro-palestine rally in Columbia. (Source: Facebook/ Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

This video predates the current student protests at Columbia University. It is from a pro-Palestinian rally in Oslo, Norway.

Claim ID 45955b8e

What’s the claim?

On April 17, a group of students at Columbia University in New York organized a "Gaza Solidarity Encampment" at Hamilton Hall. This event led to the arrest of over 200 demonstrators by the New York City Police Department (NYPD). The Guardian reported that several students involved in the protest were suspended from the university, triggering a wave of similar pro-Palestinian demonstrations at college campuses across the United States.

In the aftermath of these protests, a video showing individuals raising pro-Palestinian slogans, waving Palestinian flags, and marching in the streets has been circulating on social media. The video is overlaid with text stating, “This is what happens when you suspend 15 students for supporting Palestine @Columbia University.”

Facebook users have shared two videos—one of a daytime protest and another of a nighttime protest—suggesting they are from Columbia University. Archived versions of these posts can be found here and here.

The video clip has also gone viral on X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram, accompanied by similar captions. Archived versions of these posts can be found here and here.

Screenshot of claims made online. (Source: X/ Instagram/ Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the video is actually from Norway, not Columbia University. Logically Facts traced the video back to March 2024, predating the Columbia University protests.

What we found

A reverse image search using keyframes from the viral video led us to the original clip (archived here), shared on Instagram by photographer Eyad Al Zaro on March 21, 2024. The video has no overlaid text, and the caption indicates it was filmed in Norway. According to Al Zaro's Instagram bio, he is a photographer and credited himself for the video.

A screenshot of the Instagram post showing the original video clip. (Source: Instagram/@eyadalzaro)

We found another video (archived here), shared by Al Zaro on his Instagram profile on March 16, 2024, that resembles the one he shared on March 21. At 0:20 seconds into the March 16 video, a man can be seen waving the Palestinian flag. The same man appears in the video uploaded on March 21. The caption of the March 16 video states that it was filmed in Oslo, Norway, during pro-Palestinian protests, suggesting that Al Zaro documented the now-viral video during the March 16 protests in Oslo.

Al Zaro also shared the video (archived here) on his TikTok account.

Comparison of visuals seen in the viral video and the original video. (Source: Facebook/Instagram/@eyadalzaro)

Logically Facts confirmed via Google Maps that the red building visible at the 0:11-second timestamp in the viral video is the Arbeiderpartiet political party building at YoungsTorget in Oslo, Norway. This building can be seen throughout the video and in the nighttime visuals of the protest at the 0:37-second mark in the viral video.

Screenshot of the Google Street View and the visuals from the viral video. (Source: Facebook/Google Maps)

The verdict

The video depicts pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Norway that took place days before the Columbia University protests began. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

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