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Fake News: Elderly Man NOT Attacked For Drinking Alcohol In Front Of Halal Food Restaurant In Antwerp, Belgium

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 13 May 2018 09:17:04 Z)

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below.

Was an old man attacked for drinking alcohol in front of a halal restaurant in Antwerp, Belgium? No, that's not exactly true. Local media reports indicate a man and his son first attacked staff at the restaurant after they had asked them to put away the alcohol they had brought with them.

Video of the incident went viral after local far-right politician Filip Dewinter tweeted it with a misleading caption claiming the man was being beaten up just for drinking alcohol:

The video was picked up by other accounts minutes later:

We archived that tweet here.

Screenshot of https://twitter.com/BreakingNLive/status/995568216217972737

However, this local media report from Gazet van Antwerpen sheds a different light on the events:

Vader en zoon afgevoerd naar ziekenhuis na stevige vechtpartij op Rooseveltplaats

Antwerpen 2018 - Er was zaterdagavond een stevige vechtpartij op de Rooseveltplaats in Antwerpen. Twee personen raakten gewond en werden met de ziekenwagen afgevoerd voor verzorging. Het bleek te gaan om een vader en zijn zoon. In het ziekenhuis werd een breuk vastgesteld bij de vader, de zoon had een hoofdwonde.

Translation of the headline: "Father and son taken to hospital after fight on Roosevelt Square".

Key quote (translated):

Both gentlemen were drinking something on the terrace of a kebab shop while under the influence of alcohol. Because no alcohol was being served there the owner took it up with them. The son then allegedly punched an employee of the shop several times who then headbutted back. This caused a fight to break out that quickly escalated as the two were harshly dealt with after several people started throwing with terrace chairs.

So technically they were not attacked for drinking alcohol but for starting a fight with restaurant staff after being told they were not allowed to bring their own drinks.

Updates:

: Now Voice of Europe is spreading the misleading version of the story: Belgium: Elderly man beaten up for drinking alcohol on terrace of Kebab shop.

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About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk
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