Old video from 2015 is circulated as the recent blast in Beijing in coup against Xi Jinping

Claim

In the early morning of September 19, a series of #explosions occurred near #Beijing Shunyi International Airport. After the explosion, many helicopters appeared in the sky. #XiJinping #chinacoup

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#Beijing Footage of big explosions coming from #Beijing during the china coup against Xi Jinping? The video that is going viral on social media is true, can anyone tell ? #chinacoup #chinesecoup #china #XiJingping

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Explanation

There have been several rumours about the alleged coup against the Chinese President and General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party Xi Jinping. President Xi Jinping’s second term as China’s President ends next month and he is most likely to be re-elected for an unprecedented third term of Presidency next month after the amendment to the laws of China in 2018 which removed the term limit.

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As the re-election nears, President Xi Jinping was not seen in public much in the last 2 weeks which resulted in rumours of a military coup against him.

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Several social media users have posted some videos claiming that they were taken during the military coup in China. Some of the posts can be seen here, here, here and here.

What’s the truth?

Xi Jinping was last seen in public in Uzbekistan on September 16th 2022 during the 22nd Meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Chinese President was in quarantine following his trip as China is one of the most few countries that still follow some of the strictest restrictions for the Covid-19 Pandemic and had made a public appearance recently which dismisses the rumours of a coup against him. Since the rumour received massive attention, most of the international media reported on the reappearance of Xi Jinping in public.

Since the coup is dismissed as untrue, we turned our focus to the videos. We took the key frames of the videos and reverse searched to find the source. The first video shared by Manas Mishra matched a youtube video from 2015 which describes that the video is from Tianjin Explosion in China.

Several others have shared this exact video claiming that these are from China in a military coup which can be seen here. 

Another video which was posted by a Twitter user named Chaudhary Parvez could be found in an article posted on a few Chinese websites. There are two separate videos stuck together as one in the tweet by Chaudhary.

According to a news report from a New York-based news outlet NTD which was published on 23rd September 2020, these explosions took place in Beijing and coincide with the Chinese websites which were published a few days earlier.

A Twitter user (@JerryYang8306) posted the video on September 18, 2020.  This further confirms that the videos spread on social media are not taken recently during the alleged coup in China and they are at least 2 years old and some as old as 7 years despite them being from China.

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Conclusion

In our search, we find that the videos claiming to be footage of military coup in China are very old and some are from 2015 and some are from 2020. These videos are not taken recently in China as per the claim made by several social media users and the military coup to oust Chinese President Xi Jinping also is not true.

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