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Fact-check: Did Antifa rioters break into a zoo and let loose giraffe, tiger and hippopotamus on the streets in America

While image of giraffe dates back to 2014 at least, the two images of hippopotamus are from South Africa and Spain respectively.

On Monday, images of hippopotamus and giraffe roaming on the streets went viral on social media with various claims that these animals were spotted in various parts of America after the violence over African American man George Floyd’s killing. One viral post claimed that hippo was roaming on streets in Chicago.

Some said that the animals were let loose by violent far-left group ANTIFA after the ‘activists’ broke into a zoo.

However, that is not true. The image of giraffe dates back to 2014.

Viral image from August 2014 of ‘Louisville Purge’

‘Louisville Purge’ was an online hoax orchestrated by a teen drawing inspiration from the film The Purge. He had taken to Twitter to announce a free-for-all violent purge across city. Since the ‘purge’ itself was a hoax, the image of giraffe from the purge also appears to be a hoax.

Hence, while the image is likely of a giraffe loose on the streets, it is not from the recent riots in the US.

One of the pictures of the hippo roaming in the streets is actually from South Africa.

Hippo from South Africa

Similarly, another viral image of the hippo roaming on the streets in US is actually from Spain from 2018.

However, there were reports of a tiger on the loose from Oakland Zoo. However, the Alameda County Sheriff later clarified that all animals in the zoo are accounted for and no tiger is loose on the streets.

Riots in America

On May 25, 2020, an African American man George Floyd was killed by a white police officer. A white police officer, Derek Chauvin, knelt on the Floyd’s neck for more than 8 minutes until his body became unresponsive. The video which went viral was captured by a pedestrian, who repeatedly objected to the action of Chauvin, shows the cop trying to choke the black man with his knee. Despite the victim complaining about not being able to breathe, coupled with verbal protest from onlookers, the said officer was unmoved.

The incident provoked widespread protests and riots across several parts of the United States of America. The worst-hit was Minneapolis, where the death of George Floyd took place. The protests soon turned violent which resulted in widespread riots and looting. A woman ‘protestor’ even pooped on an overturned police car in middle of riots.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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