This photo shows a queue for fuel in Sri Lanka, not in Myanmar

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An image has been shared repeatedly in multiple Facebook posts alongside a claim that it shows a line of vehicles queuing at a petrol station in coup-hit Myanmar's second city of Mandalay in May 2022. Although local media reported on a fuel price hike in Myanmar, the image has been shared in a false context. The photo was actually taken in Sri Lanka in April 2022 and has circulated in news reports about the country's economic crisis.

The image was published here on May 25, 2022 by a Facebook user with more than 2,300 followers. It has been shared 33 times.

A screenshot of the misleading post taken on May 31, 2022

The Burmese-language caption translates to English as “#Today #Situation of fuel station in Mandalay.”

Mandalay is the second-largest city and a former royal capital of Myanmar.

Myanmar has been in turmoil since a military coup against the civilian government in 2021.

The country experienced crippling fuel shortages in the months following the coup.

The picture circulated online after local media reported here and here on a fuel price rise in Myanmar in May 2022.

The same image was also shared alongside similar claims here, here, and here.

However, the claim is false.

A reverse image search on Google found the photo published by The Straits Times, a Singapore-based newspaper, in a report about fuel prices rising in Sri Lanka in April 2022.

The photo's caption reads: "Long lines are seen at a petrol station in Sri Lanka amid the country's worst economic crisis on April 11, 2022." The photo was credited to Amila Gamage.

Gamage told AFP that he took the photo at a fuel station in the coastal city of Matara in Sri Lanka on April 11, 2022.

"The photograph was captured during an assignment with a journalist with the Straits Times", he said.

Below is a comparison of the photo in the misleading post (left) and the photo in the Straits Times' report (right):

Screenshot comparison of the photo in the misleading post (left) and the photo in the Straits Times' report (right)

The image corresponds with a CEYPETCO fuel station seen on Google Maps in Matara.

Sri Lanka has been in the grip of its worst economic crisis since independence from Britain in 1948, as reported by AFP. The crisis has led to shortages of fuel, food and essential medicines.

Unable to pay for fuel imports, there have been daily blackouts imposed on the population to ration electricity, while long lines snake around service stations for petrol and kerosene.

AFP previously debunked false posts claiming to show fuel queues in Yangon here.