Fact Check: No, viral photo of Ukrainians praying is not recent but from 2019

A photo showing a group of people praying is being shared on social media with the claim that Ukrainian Christians are praying for their country amidst the ongoing conflict with Russia.

By Tejal Sinha  Published on  25 Feb 2022 11:00 AM GMT
Fact Check: No, viral photo of Ukrainians praying is not recent but from 2019

Hyderabad: A photo showing a group of people praying is being shared on social media with the claim that Ukrainian Christians are praying for their country amidst the ongoing conflict with Russia.


The photo is viral on Twitter and can be viewed here.

Fact Check

The claim is misleading.

NewsMeter performed a Google reverse image search that led us to a report on the website IMB. The report published on 25 September 2019 was titled "Standing on Our Knees" and the image was captioned, "Ukrainians kneel and pray in the snow in Kharkov's city square."

"In March of 2014 tanks and guns and men with masks appeared on the streets of Kharkov, Ukraine, throwing everything into upheaval and threatening the twenty-three-year religious freedom that had nurtured this post-Communist generation. Nearby cities of Lugansk and Donetsk were also under attack by separatists, but those battling in Kharkov didn't know what they were up against. Pastors and evangelical leaders put out a call for prayer—seven o'clock every morning, in the city square, for anyone who wanted to fight the real battle taking place for their city—the spiritual battle. Within a week, a hundred and fifty to two hundred believers showed up to fight on their knees because they remembered the spiritual darkness that shadowed their land under Communism. This wasn't a political battle, it was and is a spiritual battle of epic proportion as their freedom to worship, meet together as churches, pray publicly, and share their faith with others was all being threatened," read the report.

A similar image was also uploaded on the website Godreports on 9 October 2019. The report was titled 'Why have these Ukrainians been praying every day on their knees for five years?'

Apart from this, several other websites, including Baptistpress and Wordandway, had published a similar image in 2019.

It is evident that the claim made through the viral post is misleading. The image is indeed from Ukraine but it is not recent.

Claim Review:People from Ukraine praying before the possible war
Claimed By:Social Media Users
Claim Reviewed By:Newsmeter
Claim Source:Social Media
Claim Fact Check:Misleading
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