An account on X pretending to be an Al Jazeera reporter who witnessed the attack on the Al-Ahli al-Arabi hospital deactivated yesterday after it was revealed to be a fake.
That account, which went under the name Farida Khan, claimed to have a video of a “Hamas missile landing in the hospital,” reported Reuters. But plenty of users quickly pointed out the account’s posting history, which didn’t align with it being an indefatigable shoe-leather reporter on the ground in Gaza.
For one, users highlighted posts from the account in September and October expressing effusive support for Indian President Narendra Modi and his ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
“This is Hindu rightwing fake disinfo account being operated by Modi’s BJP IT cell from India,” claimed @OSINT_Insider.
The official Al Jazeera PR X account put out an alert on Tuesday evening that the Farid Khan account was fake.
“We want to clarify: This account has no ties to Al Jazeera, its views, or content. Exercise caution, verify information prior to publishing.”
The Farida account also posted about entirely unrelated topics, according to users on X.
“Investing in Manforce and Durex Stock..” it posted Tuesday before its claims about the hospital went viral, joking about how an increase in weddings in India would cause condom prices to spike.
Other users highlighted a particularly eager post the account made under a video of Euphoria and Reality actress Sydney Sweeney posted by the Hot Celeb Pics account.
“Look at those bubbles..” the Farida Khan account posted the morning of the day its claims about the bombing would go viral. “Looks heavier and bigger.”
Fake claims and misinformation have swirled since a new phase of the Israel-Palestine conflict erupted when a Hamas attack on Israeli civilians and soldiers in the South of Israel last weekend killed 1,400 Israelis, mostly civilians. Since then, Israel has launched a bombing campaign in Gaza that the Atlantic Council says has impacted specifically protected locations such as hospitals, markets, refugee camps, mosques, educational facilities, and full neighborhoods, and “likely amount to war crimes.”