Video of 2020 Jakarta rally falsely shared as 'Indonesia fuel price hike protest in 2022'

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A video of a large crowd surrounding a small structure on fire has been viewed tens of thousands of times on social media posts that claim it shows a police post in Jakarta set on fire during a protest in late September 2022. Although protests against a fuel price hike swept through Indonesia during the month, the video was actually taken in October 2020, during a demonstration against a controversial job creation law.

"*THIS AFTERNOON The police post at the Farmer's Monument around 4:30pm.. PEOPLE DEMAND JUSTICE*," reads an Indonesian-language tweet, sharing a 24-second video in the early hours of September 23, 2022.

The video, which has been viewed more than 640 times, appears to show a small structure on fire surrounded by a large crowd of protesters.

A male voice can be heard saying off-camera: "The Farmer's Monument is burned down by a mob ... A riot in Jakarta."

The Farmer's Monument is a statue of an armed peasant and a woman located in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta.

Screenshot of misleading post, captured on October 12, 2022.

The clip circulated as multiple protests were held across the archipelago in September 2022 as demonstrators called for the Indonesian government to reverse a 30 percent price increase for subsidised fuel, as reported by AFP and local media.

The footage has also been viewed more than 138,000 times after it appeared alongside a similar claim elsewhere on Twitter here, on Facebook here and here, on YouTube here, and on video-sharing app Snack Video.

Some comments from social media users appeared to indicate the users believed the video was recent.

One wrote: "Bring down the barbaric regime."

"Don't ask for lower fuel prices anymore, but ask for a revolution to bring down Jokowi," said another, referring to Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

Screenshots of social media users' comments, captured on October 11, 2022

However, the claim is false.

2020 labour rights protest

Combined reverse image and keyword searches found a similar video uploaded onto the Facebook page of the Congress Alliance of Indonesian Labor Unions (KASBI) on October 8, 2020.

The Indonesian-language caption reads: "When the police officers dispersed tens of thousands of protesters by indiscriminately firing tear gas, causing hundreds of people to be injured, the crowd finally vented their anger by burning the Farmer's Monument police post."

The police post fire can be seen from the 10-second mark of the KASBI video.

The post includes hashtags that mention the Omnibus Law, a controversial job creation bill that critics said would harm labour rights and the environment.

Hundreds were arrested on October 8, 2020 as a third day of protests against the legislation across Jakarta and elsewhere in the country turned violent, AFP reported.

Below are screenshot comparisons of the clip in the misleading post (left) and the video from KASBI (right), with similar features marked by AFP:

Screenshot comparisons of the clip in the misleading post (left) and the video from KASBI (right) ( Screenshot comparisons of the clip in the misleading post (left) and the video from KASBI (right), with similar features marked by AFP.)

The police post fire on October 8, 2020 was also reported by CNN Indonesia and Detikcom, which published similar photos and footage of the incident.

An AFP reporter visited the site of the police post near the Farmer's Monument on October 6, 2022, and found no signs of recent fire damage on the police post nor the monument.

Below are pictures of the police post and the Farmer's Monument taken by AFP:

Photos of the police post (left) and Farmer's monument (right), taken on October 6, 2022

The police post seen by AFP is identical to the one shown on Google Street View, taken in May 2022.

AFP has also debunked another false claim related to fuel price protests in September 2022 here.