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Fact Check- Were These Weapons Impounded in Burkina Faso?

By Nyakerario Omari

On September 23, 2021 images claiming to show weapons impounded in Burkina Faso were shared in a tweet. Showing an image of a container and two others of the said weapons, this tweet further claimed these weapons were bound for Kidal, North of Mali.

These same images of the allegedly seized weapons were shared on this tweet on September 26, 2021 and reposted six times.

Background

Burkina Faso has reported a series of attacks in the last couple of months by Jihadist groups. In an article by the Norwegian Refugee Council, over 275,000 people were displaced between April and September 2021 with over 480 being killed between May and August in the same year.

Verification

Results from a reverse image search show the first image of custom service officers inspecting a container as featured in an article by the Bella Naija on May 24, 2017. According to the Bella Naija, the Nigerian Customs Service intercepted a container with 440 pump-action rifles at the Tincan Island Port in Lagos.

With the dates when this seizure was done, an advanced search on Twitter shows a sequel of this same image that had earlier been shared by Nigeria Customs Service on Facebook on May 23, 2017.

The second and third images were shared as early as January 30 2017 by Ships and Ports, according to reverse image searches. In this article, Ships and Ports says; the Nigerian Customs Service had impounded a container containing 49 boxes of 661 pump-rifles along Apapa road, Lagos.

Similarly, these same photos were shared by Nigeria Customs Service on Facebook on January 3, 2017.

Verdict

NO, this container was not seized in Burkina Faso but Nigeria in 2017.

This story was produced by Africa Uncensored in partnership with Code for Africa with support from Deutsche Welle Akademie.

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WanaData is a Pan-African network of female journalists, data scientists and techies working on changing the digital media landscape by producing and promoting data-driven news while applying digital technologies in their storytelling.

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