Fact Check: Wedding Fire In Northern Iraq Was NOT Deliberate

Fact Check

  • by: Lead Stories Staff
Fact Check: Wedding Fire In Northern Iraq Was NOT Deliberate Not Deliberate

Was the fire that broke out during a wedding celebration in northern Iraq premeditated and not caused by fireworks set off in the wedding hall? No, that's not true: The Iraqi government's investigation into the incident said it was accidental and caused by fireworks that ignited decorations on the ceiling.

Many Arab and international media covered the tragedy that struck Iraq on September 26, 3023, when a fire broke out during a wedding celebrations in Qaraqosh, killing more than 100 and injuring 150 more.

The claim appeared in several posts like this video (archived here) on TikTok on September 29, 2023, under the title "Shocking video proves that the wedding hall fire in Nineveh province was deliberate." It opened with a man speaking in Arabic, translated by Lead Stories staff:

"Let me show you that the fire broke in Nineveh was not becasue of the fireworks"

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

Screen Shot 2023-10-03 at 9.38.44 AM.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Mon Oct 2 15:58:35 2023 UTC)

The post uses a video of a man claiming to show proof that the fire was premeditated. The man lights a firework machine, showing a safety feature that some firework machines have called "Cold Sparkles," where sparkles coming off the machine are cooler in temperature and less likely to start a fire. He tested the device against a piece of paper and a plastic bag. Neither caught fire.

The post does not show evidence that the fireworks machine in the video is the same as the one used at the wedding party in Qaraqosh.

Moreover, the Iraqi government launched an investigation into the fatal fire. During a press conference broadcast by Iraqi state television Iraqiya TV and Iraq state news agency INA, authorities said the investigation found the cause of the fire was "gross negligence" due to the fireworks being lit inside the wedding hall and also to a lack of safety measures inside the building where the fire started.

  Lead Stories Staff

Lead Stories is a fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, deceptive or inaccurate stories (or media) making the rounds on the internet.

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Lead Stories is a U.S. based fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, misleading, deceptive or inaccurate stories, videos or images going viral on the internet.
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