Fact Check-Photo of children saluting Ukrainian tanks dates back to 2016

A photo of two children watching Ukrainian soldiers roll past atop two tanks have been falsely linked to the 2022 invasion by Russia. However, Reuters has traced the photo back to 2016.

The image has been viewed by thousands of people on social media, where it was described as the moment two children waved soldiers off to the frontline (here).

Russia has pounded Ukrainian cities with artillery and cruise missiles since launching its full-scale invasion on Feb. 24 (here). But Ukrainian resistance has been far stronger than Moscow had initially expected, according to Western intelligence sources who say Russia’s advances were significantly slowed (here).

The image of the children waving to Ukrainian troops is not from the 2022 conflict.

It carries a watermark from the Ukrainian photographer Dmitry Muravsky, who shared the shot in a Facebook photo album entitled ‘Children of War’ in March 2016. There, 18 other photos depict children either alone or interacting with people in military garb (here).

Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence also shared the album in March 2016 here.


Miscaptioned. The photo was captured in 2016. It has nothing to do with the 2022 conflict in Ukraine.

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