Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Russians Blowing Up The Nova Kakhovka Dam In Ukraine In June 2023

Fact Check

  • by: Jamal Halaby
Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Russians Blowing Up The Nova Kakhovka Dam In Ukraine In June 2023 Old Footage

Does a video circulating on social media show "Russians blowing up the Nova Kakhovka Dam" near Kherson in Ukraine in June 2023? No, that's not true: The footage is old, showing a separate incident involving the dam in November 2022, according to the Mirror, the Guardian and NBC News. At the time, the video was widely shared on social media platforms, including Twitter and Facebook, with the hashtags #Breaking or #BreakingNews.

The claim appeared as a video (archived here) posted on TikTok on June 6, 2023.

A caption in Arabic across the video, translated by Lead Stories staff, claimed:

The moment the Nova Kakhovka Dam near Kherson in Ukraine was blown up by the Russians.

The 1:17 minute video showed the dam in the Russian-controlled southern Ukraine at night. The screen flashed white after what appeared to be an explosion, which sent a cloud of black smoke, water and debris flying in the air. The video was posted on TikTok right after the collapse of the dam on June, 6, 2023, misleading viewers into believing that the images referred to this incident, as stated by some in the comments below the post. This is not the case: the video shown is from November 2022.

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

TikTok screenshotKakhovka Dam.jpg

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Thu Jun 8 09:37:32 2023 UTC)

On June 8, 2023, the BBC reported that it was not clear exactly when the dam was first damaged in the latest incident, but pointed out that there appeared to have been a "change to the flow of water" on June 6, 2023.

The Associated Press reported also on June 8, 2023, that five residents of Nova Kakhovka have died in massive flooding triggered by the breached dam, while at least 4,000 people have been evacuated from both the Russian and Ukrainian-controlled sides of the Dnieper River. The AP said the casualties were the "first official report of deaths from one of the largest environmental crises since Russia's invasion of Ukraine more than 15 months ago."

It is still unclear what caused the dam to collapse. Ukraine and Russia, meanwhile, traded accusations on the dam destruction. While Russian President Vladimir Putin said it was a "barbaric act," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy described it as an "ecological bomb of mass destruction," according to NBC News.

  Jamal Halaby

Jamal Halaby is a fact-checker, who has been working with Lead Stories for nearly two years, helping bring the truth and factual information to the organization's global audience. With extensive background in investigative journalism and content writing and editing in Arabic and English, Jamal uses that experience to expose a burgeoning market of misinformation and disinformation. Previously, he worked as a writer for the Associated Press and several other reputable international news organizations. He has a passion for empirical analysis and discerning the veracity of the news.

Read more about or contact Jamal Halaby

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