By: Arron Williams
August 10 2023
The video is originally from footage of a military parade in Senegal celebrating the country’s independence day. It does not show Nigerien soldiers.
A TikTok video now circulating on Facebook claims to show Nigerien soldiers preparing for combat in Niger. The caption reads “Niger republic soldiers displaying their strength, to remind Tinubu that they are not playing.” Tinubu is likely a reference to Bola Ahmed Tinibu, the current president of Nigeria.
According to the BBC, Tinibu threatened to use military force to reverse the coup but faced widespread opposition in Nigeria on the possibility of military intervention from the public and upper chamber of parliament. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which Tinibu is chairman of, has not responded by sending troops and its army chiefs have said military intervention is a last resort.
The video has been shared in the midst of rising tensions in Niger, which uses the demonym Nigerien – frequently misspelled as Nigerian. On July 26, 2023, the elected leader of Niger, President Mohamed Bazoum, was removed from power after a coup. This event has gained widespread international attention, largely because Bazoum was one of the few pro-Western national leaders in the Sahel region.
The video does not show Nigerien soldiers and is from a military parade in Senegal on April 4, 2023.
Tricolor flags are visible in the background of the video, consisting of vertical green, yellow, and red bands with a five-pointed green star in the middle of the central yellow band. This flag is identifiable as the Senegalese flag and is distinctively different from both Nigeria’s and Niger’s flags. In the photos, these same colors can be seen on some soldiers’ uniforms.
The X post took the video from a Senegalese TikTok account. When Logically Facts investigated the account, we found a longer video containing the same footage as the video shared on X. By identifying the flags and TikTok account, it is evident that the photos show the Senegalese military and not the Nigerien military.
The video displays a military parade, and videos of the footage on TikTok featured the hashtag #independence. From this, it was possible to identify the video as being from a military parade in Senegal on April 4, 2023. Reuters said the parade was the country’s first military parade in four years due to the COVID-19 pandemic pausing previous celebrations. The parade took place on the country’s Independence Day, with thousands of attendees celebrating.
The full coverage of the parade can be found on the official YouTube channel of Radiodiffusion Télévision Sénégalaise (RTS), the Senegalese public broadcasting company. Other footage of the event, taken nearer to the soldiers, can also be found on the Live Sn YouTube channel.
The coverage by both these channels shows different camera angles of the same event that the video on X displays. Furthermore, the soldiers seen in the X video can also be identified in other parade footage.
The video has been misattributed to Niger. The video is originally from footage of a military parade in Senegal celebrating the country’s independence day. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.