Fact Check-Blurred photo shows Palestinian man killed after attempted knife attack in Hebron

An image shared with the claim that it shows a man smiling and taking a photo of a “murdered Palestinian child” is missing context. While it appears true that the Israeli subject is taking a photo, the deceased subject was reported to be a 19-year-old man who had tried to attack soldiers with a knife.

The image was posted to social media multiple times in late May with a blur effect censoring the bloodied body of the deceased person (here , here , here and here). Above, a caption reads: “Israeli settler smiling and taking a photo of a murdered Palestinian child, where’s the humanity? It’s absent when it comes to Palestine, factual.”

Israel and Hamas were recently embroiled in some of the worst violence both sides have experienced in years. Flaring on May 10, the 11-day conflict killed 266 people – the vast majority of whom were Palestinian (here). This fighting has also led to a resurfacing of old content online, shared alongside false information or with a lack of vital context. These have been addressed by Reuters here , here , here , here , here , here and here).

The blurred photo was not taken within the past few weeks but rather can be traced back to 2015, having been captured by a professional photographer in the aftermath of an attempted stabbing attack in Hebron in the Israeli-occupied West Bank ( , here). Other angles appear to confirm the subject holding his phone was taking pictures of a deceased adult male (

The deceased individual was later identified as 19-year-old Farouq Sider (here and here), who was shot dead on al-Shuhada Street as he tried to stab an Israeli soldier (see exact location: compared with here). The soldier was reportedly unhurt (here).

It was an attack that came amid an outbreak of Palestinian unrest in October 2015 that at the time had seen 62 Palestinians killed, as well as 11 Israelis. Amnesty International said some of the killings of Palestinians were unjustified, saying Israeli forces were using “extreme and unlawful measures”. Israel maintained it had a right to use lethal force to stop attempts to kill its citizens (here).


Missing context. The photo was captured in October 2015 and shows the aftermath of an attempted knife attack in Hebron.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts here.