Video of Eid prayers in Moscow misinterpreted as footage from Paris

By: Umme Kulsum
July 7 2023

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Video of Eid prayers in Moscow misinterpreted as footage from Paris


The Verdict False

Logically Facts was able to geolocate the mosque from the viral clip to Moscow.

Claim ID 91d3c202


A video of a large number of people offering namaz (Islamic prayer) on the streets outside a mosque has gone viral on social media with the claim that it is from Paris, where, like numerous cities in France, violent protests erupted after the fatal shooting of a teenager by the police on June 27. Since the incident, many unrelated and misleading videos have been falsely linked, often with anti-immigrant and Islamophobic narratives, to the protests on social media. 

One Twitter user shared this particular 30-second-long video with the caption, "This is a glimpse of Paris, and you can't even imagine how many there are. I always say that secularism will bring a country down, and honestly, #France is doomed already, if I'm not mistaken. This can be the future of India, the West, or Europe if we don't wake up now!" The tweet was viewed more than 29,000 times at the time of publishing. However, the video is not from Paris. Archive post can be accessed here and here.

In Fact

On conducting a reverse image search on screengrabs taken from the viral clip, we discovered a tweet from October 2013 by Olga Ivshina, a BBC World correspondent. The photo showed a street with several rows of people who had their hands folded hands. The background in the photo was very similar to a frame in the viral clip, and we could spot the same buildings in both. Ivshina had shared the image with the caption in Russian that translated to "Moscow. Peace Avenue. Eid al-Adha."

Around 20 seconds into the viral video, one can see a striking mosque painted white, gold, and turquoise. While searching for more information on the viral clip using these clues and Ivshin's tweet, we came across several photographs with comparable scenes on the stock photo website Getty Images. These photos were taken in Moscow between 2015 and 2023 during the Eid celebrations indicating that offering prayers on the streets is a common sight in the Russian capital.

Using the Street View feature, we also found the same mosque from the viral clip and Getty Images on Google Maps. It is Moscow's Cathedral Mosque. We were also able to locate the Tavricheskiy Bank building —a brown and beige color structure in the video—which is next to the mosque. 

The scene in the footage also matches photos published by Moscow City News Agency. These photos were captured during mass Eid payers in Moscow in May 2022.

Although Logically Facts couldn't identify the video's source or find the exact date it was shot, comparing its frames with the above sources proves that it was filmed in Moscow and not Paris.

The Verdict

A video of Eid prayers taken in Russia outside the Moscow Cathedral Mosque has been misinterpreted as prayers being offered in Paris. Therefore, we mark the claim false.

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

We rely on information to make meaningful decisions that affect our lives, but the nature of the internet means that misinformation reaches more people faster than ever before