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No, photos don’t show Kenyans protesting outside US embassy in Nairobi

A Facebook user posted photos on 28 May 2020 that he claimed showed Kenyans protesting outside the US embassy in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

“Happening now. Kenyans protesting outside the US embassy in Kenya over the killing of an unarmed black man in Minneapolis,” the photos are captioned.

Protests erupted across the United States after George Floyd, a black man, was killed in police custody by a white officer in the city of Minneapolis on 25 May. 

There have been marches and protests in solidarity with Floyd and black Americans across the world.

Africa Check has already debunked claims that Kenyans protested outside the Kenyan embassy in the US capital, Washington DC, following Floyd’s death. 

But do these photos show Kenyans outside the US embassy in Nairobi? We checked.

Photos old, unrelated

On 28 May, the date the photos were posted on Facebook, there was no media coverage of any local protests in Nairobi. Solidarity protests would have attracted media attention.

The protestors in the photos are not wearing facemasks. During the Covid-19 pandemic Kenyans face arrest if they do not wear masks in public. Public gatherings are also prohibited.

Kenyans did protest outside the US embassy in Nairobi, but on 2 June. This was covered by local media. Videos and photos show people wearing facemasks.

A reverse image search of one of the photos posted on Facebook shows that it is from as early as 12 August 2017. 

It appeared in an article published by the Voice of America. It was captioned: “A Kenyan police officer tries to put out flames from a burning tire in Nairobi’s Kibera slum.”

This was during unrest following Kenya's 2017 disputed general elections.

‘Not true’, US embassy

The photos have also been debunked as “fake” by the US embassy in Nairobi.

“Disregard, this is not true,” the embassy posted on its verified Facebook page. – Dancan Bwire


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