Fact Check-Video of alleged fake Palestinian killing is from a short film

A clip circulating online, which some social media users say shows Palestinians staging a fake killing using actors, is footage of the filming of the Palestinian short film “Empty Place,” based on the story of imprisoned Palestinian Ahmed Manasra.

The video shows a film crew standing alongside an actor wearing a t-shirt with a white star emblazoned on the front, who can be seen lying on his back, his leg twisted behind him with what appears to be stage blood on the ground.

One user who shared the video on Twitter said: “Palestinians “stage” a killing, using actors dressed as Jewish and @IDF. These fake images will be used to incite violence and misery. @amnesty @hrw will use it as “evidence.” h/t @MerlinOhad” ( ).

Another said: “Pallywood at its best. The Palestinians are faking scenes where a child is shot by Israeli soldiers. I wish they spent all these resources to promote peace rather than propaganda” ( ).

Other examples of the video shared online can be seen ( here ), ( here ) and ( here ).

The clip does not show Palestinians staging a fake killing. It shows the filming of a short movie titled “Empty Place,” directed by Awni Eshtaiwe, which is based on events that led up to the imprisonment of Palestinian Ahmed Manasra.

The scene viewable at 1:15 in the short film corresponds to the footage circulating online. The individual on the ground and the clothes he is wearing match the social media footage ( ).

Another angle showing filming of the scene was uploaded to TikTok and can be seen ( ).

“Empty Place” director Awni Eshtaiwe told Reuters the footage circulating online was taken during filming of his short movie.

In October 2015, a video circulated widely online which showed a then 13-year-old Ahmed Manasra, a Palestinian boy from Beit Hanina in northern Jerusalem, with his legs twisted behind him and blood coming from his head after being hit by a car.

The video was taken minutes after two Israelis were stabbed outside a nearby shop. Israeli police accused Manasra and his 15-year-old cousin, who was shot dead, of carrying out the attacks. The family denied they did it ( here ), ( here ).

The scene in the short film depicts the video that circulated online in 2015 of Manasra injured on the ground. The video was aired by news outlets at the time, including by CBS (28 seconds) [graphic warning] ( ) and Al Jazeera [graphic warning] ( ).


Miscaptioned. A clip circulating online does not show Palestinians staging a killing. It shows the filming of the short film “Empty Place,” directed by Awni Eshaiwe.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.