Following the recent protests over the rise in fuel prices in several areas in Jordan, a video appeared on pages and accounts on social media, which was said to be documenting clashes between demonstrators and security forces there, and a video was spread that was said to be of recent demonstrations.
However, the video of the clashes was published years ago, and shows demonstrators throwing stones at police cars, or setting a fire in the middle of a street.
The accompanying commentary reads, “Violent clashes took place in the Jordanian capital, Amman, between the regime forces and the people.”
The comment was accompanied by an “urgent” tag, which suggests that the video was recently filmed.
This video garnered thousands of views on social media.
The spread of the video in this context comes after the implementation of mostly peaceful strikes, in the governorates of southern Jordan, to protest the rise in fuel prices, starting with truck drivers and sometimes joined by taxi and public bus drivers, leading to the closure of markets and shops in Ma’an and Karak (114 km south of Amman) and the governorate of Ma’an. Madaba (35 km south of Amman) in solidarity.
Last week, the deputy police chief of Ma’an governorate was killed while dealing with “riots” during protests in the area protesting the rise in fuel prices, according to what the Public Security Directorate announced.
In this context, the circulating video appeared, which was said to depict recent clashes between demonstrators and security forces in Amman.
However, what was said about the video is incorrect, as it has been posted on social media pages and on a news website for years.
It is sufficient to write “clashes – Jordan – demonstrators” to obtain copies of the same video published at least three years ago, which refutes the fact that the scenes in it were recent, as the misleading publications claimed.
According to the websites published at the time, the video shows a clash between demonstrators and security forces in the city of Ramtha, near the border with Syria.
Are the video images really in Ramtha?
In the circulating video, it is possible to notice stores that are guided by the search for their names, with the addition of the name of the city of Ramtha on Google Maps to the same street that appears in one of the video scenes, but the bank branch shown in Google Maps does not appear in the video because the bank branch opened in the year 2020, while the video Photographed in 2019 at least.
It was not possible for AFP journalists to confirm the exact date this video was filmed (in 2019 or before), but coinciding with the date it was posted on YouTube in August 2019, the northern city of Ramtha witnessed protests after a decision by the authorities to limit the amount of cigarettes that could be brought into the country across the border.
In a related context, a video appeared on pages and accounts on social media, which was said to be documenting large demonstrations in the capital, Amman, calling for the departure of King Abdullah. But this video was made at least ten years ago.
The video shows what appears to be a demonstration involving thousands, and protest chants are heard.
The accompanying commentary stated, “Massive demonstrations broke out in Jordan, calling for the departure of King Abdullah.”
This video garnered tens of thousands of views on social media.
However, what was said about the video is incorrect, as it was filmed at least ten years ago, and a search for it on search engines led to an identical copy posted on YouTube in 2012, which refutes its being recent.
The attached explanation states that the video depicts a demonstration on the 16th of October of that year in the city center.
Is the video footage really in Oman?
Searching on the Google engine, using the terms “mosque” and “downtown” used in the explanation of the video, and “Amman” leads to pictures of a mosque whose facade is similar to the mosque shown in the video, and the name of this mosque is “Al-Husseini Grand Mosque.”
Indeed, this mosque is located in the downtown area of the Jordanian capital, and AFP photographers have already taken pictures of it. It can also be found on Google Maps.
What happened in Jordan at that time?
According to AFP journalists in Amman, in November of that year, widespread protests erupted in Jordan after raising the prices of oil derivatives by rates ranging between 10 and 53 percent to meet the budget deficit, which amounted to nearly $7.7 billion.
Riots that accompanied those protests led to the death of one person and the injury of 71 others, including security men, while 158 people were arrested, dozens of whom were released, and they were charged with about 100 charges, including “incitement to oppose the government”, “illegal gathering” and “rioting”.