Beirut port explosion footage being mistaken as Ukraine

1 March 2022
What was claimed

A video filmed on a street shows a massive explosion in Ukraine.

Our verdict

The video was taken in 2020, and appears to show the port explosion in Beirut.

A video of a massive explosion has been shared over 11,000 times on Facebook, with the accompanying caption that the user sharing it is “feeling heartbroken in Ukraine”.

This video was not taken in Ukraine during the recent Russian invasion. It appears to show the Beirut port explosion, which took place on 4 August 2020 and was caused after a fire detonated thousands of tonnes of improperly stored ammonium nitrate at the port in Lebanon.

The full video shows smoke billowing in the distance, before a massive explosion and subsequent shockwave that knocks the person holding the camera over. The earliest version we can find appeared on Reddit on 4 August 2020.

We’ve seen a number of misleading posts claiming to show footage and pictures of Ukraine, that are actually from totally different events or even CGI. You can read our guide on how to spot misleading videos here.

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as false because the video does not show Ukraine but appears to show the 2020 Beirut port explosion.

Full Fact fights bad information

Bad information ruins lives. It promotes hate, damages people’s health, and hurts democracy. You deserve better.