Do These Images Show Diplomats Leaving Kenya Before July Protests as Alleged?

Images shared here, here, here and here are claimed to supposedly show diplomats at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport leaving Kenya on July 16, 2023, ahead of the countrywide protests that began on July 19, 2023.


Opposition leader Raila Odinga announced a fresh round of anti-government protests on July 7, 2023, against the rising cost of living and new tax policies. After the July 7 protests, three-day protests to take place every week were announced by the opposition.  Most demonstrations countrywide resulted in violence that led to 30 deaths by July 20, 2023 according to Amnesty International.


A reverse search of the first image circulating reveals that it was first used on the Vanderbilt University website on July 17, 2013. According to the website, it shows student-athletes boarding a Kenya Airways flight to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. See screen grab below;

A search of the second image reveals that it was first shared in an article by the Associated Press dated November 7, 2022. The picture was taken on November 5, 2023 as passengers waited at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport amid a pilots’ strike. See screen grab below;


Claims the images show diplomats leaving Kenya ahead of protests are FALSE.

This fact check was published by Piga Firimbi with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck and African Fact-Checking Alliance.

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