AFP photo of 2018 World Cup celebrations shared online alongside false claim about Covid-19 protest in Paris

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An image has been shared hundreds of times in multiple Facebook posts that claim it shows a major protest in Paris against coronavirus restrictions in December 2020. The claim is false; the image, taken by an AFP photographer, actually shows celebrations in Paris following France’s World Cup win in 2018.

The Facebook post was published here on December 19, 2020. It has been shared more than 700 times.

The text superimposed on the image reads: “Looks Like Paris Has Had Enough Tonight! The World Is Awake. 18.12.2020 Paris”.

The post’s caption reads: “I Posted this REVOLUTION IMAGE Last Night!
"FB DELETED IT .. Here is is AGAIN!
"FRANCE is STANDING UP!!
"NO MORE BANKSTERS CONTROL!
"NO More Fake Covid Controls ..
"NO MORE Money / Financial Controls ..
"LIBERTY, EQUALITY, FRATERNITY!!!”

A screenshot of the misleading Facebook post as of December 21, 2020.

The image was also shared alongside a similar claim here, here, here, here, and here.

The claim, however, is false.

A Google reverse image search of the post found this report on UK news site Metro. The report, which includes the same image, is about celebrations in Paris following the French national football team’s win at the 2018 World Cup. 

The image was taken by an AFP photographer. It can be viewed here on the AFP website and here on Getty Images. The photo was taken on July 15, 2018. 

This picture taken from the top of the Arch of Triumph (Arc de Triomphe) on July 15, 2018 shows people lighting flares as they celebrate after France won the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match against Croatia, on the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris. (Photo by Ludovic MARIN / AFP) (AFP / Ludovic Marin)

The image's caption reads: “This picture taken from the top of the Arch of Triumph (Arc de Triomphe) on July 15, 2018 shows people lighting flares as they celebrate after France won the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match against Croatia, on the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris.”

Below is a comparison of the image in the misleading Facebook post (L) and the AFP photo (R): 

The location facing the Champs-Elysees, where the image was taken, can be viewed here on Google Street View.

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