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No, photo does not show Nigerian Army vehicle damaged by Biafra agitators’ bullets

IN SHORT: Contrary to claims by a faction leader of the Nigerian terrorist group Ipob, the photo does not show a Nigerian Army vehicle riddled with bullets by Biafra agitators.

In April 2024, Simon Ekpa shared a photo on social media of a vehicle riddled with bullets. He claimed that it belonged to the Nigerian Army.

Ekpa is a factional leader within the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob), a separatist group in eastern Nigeria that seeks to re-establish the Republic of Biafra

It has continued to agitate for the restoration of Biafra, despite being declared a terrorist group by the Nigerian government in 2017. 

A post on Facebook with the same claim reads: “Oku dikwa over 🔥🔥🔥 When the terr0rists @HQNigerianArmy meet Biafra resistance fighters. -PM.”

We found other instances of the claim on Facebook here, here, here, here, here and here

But is the photo of a bullet-riddled Nigerian Army vehicle? We checked.

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Photo from an assault on the Syrian military

A Google reverse image search of the photo led us to an 8 April post on X (formerly Twitter) by “TRACTerrorism”. The account said the photo was from an attack on the Syrian Democratic Forces

The Terrorism Research & Analysis Consortium (Trac) is a group that provides compendiums of information and analyses of terrorist groups and activities.

The photo caption reads: “Suspected Islamic State (#IS) #Armed Assault of Vehicle Belonging to Syrian Democratic Forces (#SDF/PKK), in #al-Alwa, #Hasakah Governorate, #Syria.”

The Islamic State is a militant group that captured and held large parts of eastern Syria from 2014 to 2019

Africa Check was unable to find any news of a clash between the Nigerian Army and Biafra agitators, or a photo of the bullet-riddled vehicle in any credible media outlet in April.

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