Images of a ‘Palestinian girl’ being rescued were taken in Syria in 2016

30 October 2023
What was claimed

A series of images show the same Palestinian girl being saved by three different rescuers on three different days at three different locations 50 km apart from each other.

Our verdict

If taken literally, this claim is not true. These pictures were actually taken in Aleppo, Syria, in the aftermath of a bombing that took place on 27 August 2016. We have not seen reports showing the same Palestinian girl being rescued three times.

Posts on Facebook and X (formerly Twitter) sharing images of a girl being rescued claim: “This Palestinian girl is saved by 3 different people from 3 different locations on 3 different days and all locations are 50 KM apart from each other. Wondering why she keeps travelling so far especially in the conflict zone?”

It’s not entirely clear what these posts are suggesting. We have not seen any reports that could misleadingly suggest the same Palestinian girl has been rescued on three separate occasions. And if we take the posts literally, they are not true, because we can say for certain that these images come from Aleppo, Syria, in the aftermath of a bombing that took place on 27 August 2016.

They do not come from the current conflict in Israel and Gaza, and do not show rescues taking place in Gaza.

Reverse image searches of each photo show that they were all taken on the same day, at the same location, and show the same girl being passed between different rescuers.

The first photo featured in coverage of the Aleppo bombing by the Daily Mail and The Sun. The second featured in reports on the same bombing by NBC News, while the third was published alongside a report on the bombing by Arab Times, and also appears in an ABC News report on the impact of the war in Syria on children, with a caption stating that it was taken at the 27 August 2016 bombing.

Social media posts about these images were previously fact checked by Snopes in 2016, and Africa Check in 2019 after it was claimed that CNN had used them to illustrate three different refugee crises.

It’s possible that these images have been shared inaccurately online in relation to air strikes on Gaza, though we’ve not found any examples of this.

We have written about a number of other claims based on misleading images and videos surrounding the Israel-Gaza conflict in recent weeks. 

It’s important to check images and videos are genuine before sharing them, especially during developing news events like this. For advice on how to do this, read our guide.

Image courtesy of Obersachse

Full Fact fights bad information

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