According to a Facebook post widely shared in South Africa, Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo sent a video message to Palestinians expressing solidarity with their situation. While Ronaldo does not appear in the 21-second video, he shared it on social media in 2016 as a “Save the Children Global Artist Ambassador.” Ronaldo delivers an inspirational message to children in war-torn Syria in the video.
The post, which has since been deleted, was published on Facebook on May 16, 2021, and received over 420 shares before being removed.
On May 18, 2021, they captured a screenshot of the Facebook post. “Cr7 is pro-Palestine. A poignant message from football legend Cristiano Ronaldo...you do not have to be Muslim to support Palestine; you have to be human, “reads the post’s caption. We shared the identical video with a similar allegation here. Additionally, an excerpt from Ronaldo’s video appears at the beginning of this Facebook video with the caption: “Ronaldo Cristiano: Palestine, you are not alone; the world is on your side; we are on your side.”
In May 2021, renewed fighting between Israel’s Jewish state and armed Palestinian groups erupted in the Gaza Strip. According to AFP, over 200 Palestinians, including 61 children, have been killed since the latest violence began.
However, the video has been disseminated in an erroneous context: It depicts Ronaldo reaching out to Syrian youngsters with a message of hope. “This is for the children of Syria; we are aware of your tremendous suffering. While I am a well-known footballer, you are the actual heroes. Never lose hope; the world is on your side. We are concerned about you, and I am with you, “Ronaldo adds in the tape. According to AFP Fact Check, the video was shared on Ronaldo’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram account on December 23, 2016. Additionally, Save the Children produced an article about Ronaldo’s video.
Syria’s decade-long civil war has displaced more than 11 million people both inside and outside the nation. Since the conflict began, about 400,000 people have been slain.
When Ronaldo recorded this message in 2016, more children were killed in Syria than in any previous conflict. According to the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), at least 652 people were killed in the country in 2016, a 20% rise over the previous year.