On 24 March 2021, a Facebook post named Abebe Gobeze (a personal blog with 7,609 followers) shared an image that shows fire and explosion with the claim that Sudanese army troops destroyed an agro-industry with fire in Gondar. The text written in Amharic reads, “Breaking news: the Sudanese army further entered 60km to Western Gondar and destroyed an agro-processing factory. The invading Sudanese army is looting and destroying our peoples’ properties and wealth. Unless a solution is found for this invading force, it is marching to central Gondar. Since it attacked the Amhara special [police] force yesterday, the area is filled with tension...” However, HaqCheck has interrogated the claim and confirmed that the image below doesn’t show the Sudanese army destroying an agro-processing factory in Western Gondar. Therefore, HaqCheck has rendered the post as FALSE due to an inaccurate image to support the claim.
There have been armed clashes around the Ethio-Sudanese border since November 2020. The Sudan Armed Forces stated that they reclaimed territory in the Salam Bir and Mahaj areas in El Gedaref from the Ethiopian army and armed militias. On 31 December 2020, Omar Qamareddine, Sudanese foreign minister, declared restoration and full control over all territories along the Ethio-Sudanese border taken over by Ethiopian farmers. The countries have been in talks and negotiations to settle the issue and demarcate the boundary despite being in vain. Recently, Sudan has accepted an offer by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to mediate with Ethiopia over the contested territories.
In this context, the image was shared claiming the Sudanese army smashed an agro-manufacturing industry in west Gondar. However, a reverse image search of the Facebook post’s picture doesn't prove the claim. The image was taken from a video done by Reuters that shows fire destroying thousands of homes in the Rohingya refugee camp in southern Bangladesh on 22 March 2021. The original post related to the image can be with the following link.
There have been armed conflicts along with the border areas between Ethiopian and Sudanese forces indeed. However, HaqCheck has interrogated the claim and confirmed that the image below doesn't show the Sudanese army destroying an agro-processing factory in west Gondar, therefore, rendering the post FALSE due to the usage of an inaccurate image to support the claim.
Fact Checked by: Hagos Gebreamlak
This article is part of HaqCheck, Addis Zeybe’s multilingual fact-checking initiative, run by its R&D Department.