Fact checks about countries

Earthquake video was not taken during the Papua New Guinea quake

Lorenz Pasion

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Earthquake video was not taken during the Papua New Guinea quake
Yandex reverse image search shows that the video was taken four years ago during the 2018 Sulawesi earthquake that hit Sulawesi island in Indonesia

Claim: A video shows footage of the Papua New Guinea earthquake that occurred on September 11, 2022.

Rating: FALSE

Why we fact-checked this: The claim has over 9,400 reactions, 974 comments, and 133,800 views on Facebook, as of writing.

Not captured in 2022: Based on Yandex reverse image search, the video is traceable to 2018 and was not taken in Papua New Guinea. 

A video uploaded on image sharing website imgur on October 9, 2018 found through Yandex reverse image search suggests that the video was taken in Palu, Indonesia during the 2018 Sulawesi earthquake.

Using Google image search, Rappler also found posts uploaded by Facebook users on October 8, 2018, that said the video was taken in Sigi regency.

According to Mapcarta, Sigi regency “lies upstream on the Palu River, and immediately south of Palu city, the provincial capital.”   

2018 Sulawesi earthquake: According to a National Geographic article published on October 1, 2018, the Sulawesi earthquake was a magnitude 7.5 quake that struck the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia on September 28, 2018. A Reliefweb report on October 5, 2018, said that it resulted in 1,581 casualties and affected 1.5 million people.

Previously fact-checked: Reuters also fact-checked a similar claim that said the video was taken during the earthquake in Papua New Guinea on September 11, 2022.

Papua New Guinea earthquake: A magnitude 7.6 earthquake struck the Eastern New Guinea region in Papua New Guinea on September 11, 2022. According to to the National Geophysical Data Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this is the strongest earthquake to hit the largest island of Papua New Guinea since 2002. – Lorenz Pasion/Rappler.com

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Lorenz Pasion

Lorenz Pasion is a researcher at Rappler and a member of its fact-check team that debunks false claims that spread on social media.