Video does not show bulldozer driving over injured at Gaza hospital

4 January 2024
What was claimed

A video shows “Israeli bulldozers” running over civilians outside the Kamal Adwan hospital in north Gaza.

Our verdict

This footage is unrelated to the Israel-Gaza conflict. It shows the dispersal of protesters by the Egyptian military in Cairo in 2013.

Warning: links in this article contain potentially upsetting footage.

A video being shared on social media claims to show an Israeli-operated bulldozer running into civilians outside a hospital in Gaza.

One caption with a post says: “Israeli bulldozers ran over more than 20 sick and injured civilians and buried them alive in KAMAL ADWAN HOSPITAL in the north of Gaza” [sic].

But the footage, which has been shared on both Facebook and X (formerly Twitter), is actually unrelated and is being falsely linked to the current Israel-Gaza conflict.

The clip comes from Egypt in August 2013, when it was posted by the Al Jazeera Arabic channel. It shows a bulldozer being used in the dispersal of protesters who had gathered in support of ousted President Mohamed Morsi.

Accounts from Gazan authorities say that Israeli forces used a bulldozer to demolish the perimeter of the Kamal Adwan hospital in December, forcing out displaced people. We have not seen reports that people were directly injured by these bulldozers. Israel says the hospital was used by Hamas fighters. Neither of these accounts has been verified.

What happened in Egypt in 2013?

A sit-in protest in Rabaa al-Adawiya Square in Cairo was held against a military coup that had deposed Mr Morsi—the country’s first civilian elected president—in July 2013.

On 14 August, the Egyptian military moved in to disperse the protest camp using armoured vehicles and bulldozers to demolish it. Global human rights organisations described the actions of the military as a massacre.

According to a report by Human Rights Watch, at least 904 people were killed by Egyptian forces while the military broke up the protest. The majority—817—were at Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, and 87 others were killed at the nearby al-Nahda Square.

However the report says that missing and unidentified bodies mean the death toll was likely above a thousand.

A note on the Al-Jazeera video describes the footage (when translated by Google) as “a bulldozer sweeping away dozens of bodies of victims of the massacre, indifferent to the warnings of the demonstrators”. This suggests that while many people were killed on the day, living people may not have been run over in this clip.

Full Fact has seen many examples of misleading images and footage relating to the conflict in Israel and Gaza, including a clip of a vehicle driving ‘through a crowd of Palestine protesters’ which was actually from a 2020 Black Lives Matter march. You can read more about identifying misleading images and videos using our guides here and here.   

Image courtesy of Diariocritico de Venezuela.

Full Fact fights bad information

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