Published: Wed, November 15, 2017
Global | By Shelia Dennis

AC-130 Gunship Simulator screenshot apparently proves the USA works with ISIS

AC-130 Gunship Simulator screenshot apparently proves the USA works with ISIS

The evidence was "irrefutable", the Russian defense ministry claimed: The US is supporting ISIS.

The social media post for both its Russian language channel and the English-language version were also deleted following the revelation that the scene was from a video game. Another photo was taken from a mobile game AC-130 Gunship Simulator: "Special Ops Squadron".

The discovery was made by Eliot Higgins, founder of the investigative website Bellingcat, who noticed a large red "fire" button in the corner had been cropped out of the picture.

But the Conflict Intelligence Team, described by The Guardian as "Russian online investigators who fact-check claims by the Russian military", refuted the Ministry's claims in a Facebook message of its own.

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AFP was able to compare the images in the emailed defense ministry statement with the images of the video game on YouTube and confirm the resemblance.

Earlier on Tuesday, the ministry posted a statement on its Facebook page saying the US air force had tried to hinder Russian strikes on Islamic State militants, accompanied by satellite photographs it said showed a vehicle convoy of Islamic State militants leaving the Syrian town of Albu Kamal on November 9 2017.

The ministry said an employee had mistakenly attached the photo.

According to the Russian MoD, Washington planned to "recover their combat capabilities,", so they could be used elsewhere in the Middle East as proxy forces on the Americans' behalf.

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It said the US-led coalition refused requests to cooperate and "eliminate fleeing Isis convoys". "All content subject to change".

"I certainly can't verify, but I've seen the report that one of the pictures came from a video game".

It repeated the claim it was "irrefutable evidence that USA are actually covering Isis [IS] combat units to recover their combat capabilities, redeploy, and use them to promote the American interests in the Middle East".

Russia's Defence Ministry said on Tuesday an employee had attached the wrong photos to a statement accusing the United States of providing de-facto air cover for Islamic State in Syria after the mistake was spotted online.

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