Published: Wed, November 15, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Russian Federation uses video game pictures to claim United States helped Isil

Russian Federation uses video game pictures to claim United States helped Isil

Russia's defence ministry has tried to pass off what appear to be stills from a mobile phone military simulation game as "irrefutable evidence" of cooperation between USA forces and Islamic State militants in Syria, Guardian writes.

"Regarding Abu Kamal, this is not the only case when the US spares terrorists", Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov was quoted as saying by Russia's official TASS news agency on Tuesday. According to PCGamesN, the screenshot is from a gameplay footage video for a game called AC-130 Gunship Simulator which was uploaded to YouTube by its developer.

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.

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The Conflict Intelligence Team fact-checking group said the other four provided were also errors, taken from a June 2016 video which showed the Iraqi Air Force attacking IS in Iraq.

The posts included several aerial images supposedly backing Russia's claim, including one labeled: "ISIS automobile convoy leaves Abu Kamal for Syrian-Iraqi border (November 9th, 2017)". It later reposted the same statement with different images.

The ministry also said that the USA coalition categorically refused to strike the retreating terrorists in spite of repeated proposals by the Russian military to conduct joint actions.

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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.

"The US are actually covering the ISIS combat units to recover their combat capabilities, redeploy, and use them to promote the American interests in the Middle East", said the ministry.

Responding to Russia's allegations in remarks carried by Reuters, a spokesman for the US-led coalition Col Ryan Dillon said the Russian allegations were "about as accurate as their air campaign". "So, again that is pretty consistent with what we have seen come out of Russian MoD, as being baseless, inaccurate and you know, completely false", he told a briefing with Pentagon reporters on Tuesday.

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