Conflict between Russia and Ukraine: what types of misinformation circulate in Latin America

On February 24, Russia began with attacks on different territories of Ukraine. And, as usually happens with crises and the issues that generate a lot of news, social networks are fertile ground for the viralization and consumption of misinformation about the current conflict between the two countries. This implies a problem when it comes to obtaining information and learning about the real situation of the conflict.

For this reason, IFCN, the International Data Verification Network —of which checked is part—, created #UkraineFactsa collaborative database that contains verifications of misinformation regarding the war circulating in 35 countries in different regions of the world.

Based on the analysis of this global base, we will tell you about the most common misinformation circulating in Latin America.

1. Images and videos that correspond to other conflicts

The most common misinformation that has circulated so far is based on different videos and images that do not correspond to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine but to other wars or conflicts. For example, this content fake, verified by the Spanish site Maldita. It is about images of bombings that are attributed to the current war but that, in reality, correspond to the conflict that exists in the Gaza Strip (Palestine) and were taken in 2021. Videos of an alleged Russian plane shot down by the Ukrainian army are also being broadcast. However, it is a plane crash that occurred in 1993, as the Mexican website Animal Político was able to verify in this note.

2. Fragments that are taken from video games

On the other hand, manipulated content circulates that are fragments of video games. Like this video that supposedly shows a bombing in Ukraine by Russia when, It actually belongs in a video verified by factual AFP in this note.

3. Assembly with Nazi symbology

Other widely circulated content included images with Nazi symbology awarded to authorities in both Russia and Ukraine. For example, this supposed cover of Time magazine that has a photo of the current Russian president, Vladimir Putin, with the mustache of the former German dictator Adolf Hitler; it was checked that is manipulated. Or, an alleged photo of the President of Ukraine, Vladimir Zelensky, holding a T-shirt with a swastika: also it was verified which is a montage.

4. False statements

False claims, citing statements by public figures about the war that never happened, are also very common. Like an alleged tweet from Pablo Echenique, spokesman for the Spanish political coalition Unidas Podemos, in which he writes “Ukrainian civilian victims are unimportant collateral damage”, but EFE Verifies checked that there are no records of said message. one is also false viral post in which Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Tan Kefei reportedly claims that his country would wholeheartedly support Russia should the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) intervene militarily in the ongoing conflict with Ukraine .

5. Fake deaths

Finally, another group of misinformation is about false deaths of political personalities or death figures. For example, went viral a screenshot of an alleged news item from a Mexican media outlet entitled: “Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelenskim dies in an ambush by a Russian commando” (sic). That information is false. Or like this post announcing that there are tens of thousands of bodies on the streets of Ukraine and that civilians are unable to escape, but what in this note it is proven to be false.

You can see all misinformation denied yesabout the war between Russia and Ukraine here.

*This text was published in the Argentine media checked and is reproduced with permission

Conflict between Russia and Ukraine: what types of misinformation circulate in Latin America