A video shared thousands of times on social media falsely accuses Ukrainian refugees for having set fire to a house in Germany while attempting to burn the Russian flag.
A video has falsely claimed that Ukrainian refugees have burned down a home in Germany after attempting to set fire to a Russian flag.
The misleading footage has been shared thousands of times on various social media platforms in Russian, German, and Bulgarian.
The clip alleges that the German tabloid newspaper Bild published a video showing a house burning in Germany.
The video then shows a clip of a crying woman -- allegedly the daughter of the property owner. The caption falsely alleges that Ukrainian refugees set the building on fire after attempting to burn a Russian flag.
Bild's deputy Editor-in-Chief Timo Lokoschat has stated on Twitter that the newspaper did not publish any such video.
"The truth is: BILD never wrote this news report. This is a complete fake," he wrote on May 17.
Further investigation has revealed that the footage of a house fire dates several years before the war in Ukraine began.
The video was first published on YouTube in 2013 when a building caught fire in the German village of Walluf – almost 300 kilometres away from it was claimed Ukrainian refugees had supposedly set fire to a house.
Moreover, the footage of the woman crying also was first shared in January 2021, months before millions of people fled Ukrainian territory.
While the clip did originate from a Bild news story -- an interview where the woman explains that her mother died of cancer and her home then burned down -- it does not make any reference to Ukrainian refugees.
More than 700,000 people fleeing the war in Ukraine have been recorded in Germany up until mid-May, according to Germany's Central Register of Foreigners (AZR).