This video has circulated in reports about a fight on an Afghan TV show in 2016
A video circulating on social media has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times alongside claims it shows politicians from two Pakistani political parties brawling on a television show. However, the claim is misleading; the video actually shows a 2016 debate aired on an Afghan TV channel during which guests clashed over a potential peace deal between the local government and a militant group. AFP found no evidence that the guests were Pakistani politicians.
The video -- which shows two men hitting each other in a television studio -- was posted here on Facebook on January 26, 2022.
It has been viewed more than 500,000 times.
The post claims the men filmed fighting are from Pakistan's ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and the opposition Awami National Party (ANP).
The post's Urdu-language caption translates to English as: "A fight between dangerous PTI and ANP on a live TV channel."
PTI members have previously been involved in on-air altercations and supporters of both parties have clashed in deadly violence.
Several users appeared to believe the claim in the posts.
One wrote in English: "All this filth is created by [Pakistan Prime Minister] Imran Khan who used to speak foul language on the container in D-Chowk and today its effects have come to the fore."
“PTI is now like this all over the country. This is what these poor people have learned,” wrote another in Urdu.
D-Chowk is a traffic circle in the capital Islamabad, often the site of political rallies and protests.
The video was shared with a similar claim in Facebook posts here, here, and here; and on Twitter here and here.
However, the video has been shared in a misleading context.
AFP found no official reports about politicians from Pakistan's PTI and ANP political parties being involved in an on-air altercation in January 2022.
Both political parties separately told AFP the incident in the video does not show their politicians.
"There is no such person in PTI and we don’t think this video is from any Pakistani TV channel," Zahir Shah Toru, spokesman for PTI in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province told AFP.
Samar Haroon Bilour, KP provincial spokesperson for ANP said: "We do not know those people [in the video] and they are not linked to our party."
A reverse image search found a longer version of the video published here on YouTube on June 10, 2016 by Afghan television channel 1TV.
The video's English and Persian-language title reads: "Amaj - 09.06.2016 - tumultuous debate over Hekmatyar joining Afghan government peace process."
"Amaj" refers to the name of the TV programme in the video.
The panellists were debating a potential peace deal between the government and notorious warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, a former Afghan prime minister.
The anchor (left) introduces the guests at the one-minute-thirty-second mark of the YouTube video.
"Ahmad Saeedi, university lecturer. Zulfiqar Omid, leader of the Labor and Development Party of Afghanistan. Fazl Minallah Mumtaz, political analyst," he says in Persian.
Towards the end of the clip, Omid and Mumtaz can be seen attacking each other after a disagreement.
Below is a screenshot comparison of the footage in the misleading posts (L) and the original (R):
1TV broadcast a follow-up episode in which they responded to online questions about the altercation, and there was no indication that either of the men are Pakistani politicians.