Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Mosque Destroyed In China -- Earthquake-Damaged Minaret In Turkey Required Demolition

Fact Check

  • by: Sarah Thompson
Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Mosque Destroyed In China -- Earthquake-Damaged Minaret In Turkey Required Demolition Turkish Mosque

Does a video posted on X show a work crew in China destroying a mosque? No, that's not true: This scene has nothing to do with China because the video shows a mishap that occurred in Adana, Turkey where the minaret of the Gökoğlu Mosque sustained structural damage during the 7.8 and 7.5 magnitude earthquakes which shook the country on February 6, 2023. The demolition of this and many other minarets in Adana, which were damaged but still standing, was planned out of caution. One of the workers was hit by some rubble when the minaret fell.

The video appeared in a post on X, formerly Twitter, by @raviagrawal3 on February 6, 2024 (archived here). It opened:

Is China treating Islamists properly?
The funny thing is that 56 Islamic countries are silent..!!

This is what the post looked like on X at the time of writing:
(Source: X screenshot taken on Tue Feb 13 17:27:45 2024 UTC)

The three-second-long video posted on X is a shortened clip that shows the minaret begin to collapse. In a 1:20-minute-long video embedded in a March 2, 2023, article in yenicaggazetesi.com the video continues: When the minaret falls, the rubble rolls at a high rate of speed toward a man in a high-visibility vest, who is knocked down and is then helped to his feet. The article's title, translated by Google, says, "Worker injured in controlled minaret demolition," reporting:

One of the most damaged structures was mosques. The minarets of 7 of the 1,474 mosques in Adana collapsed spontaneously during the earthquake. 150 mosque minarets started to pose a danger because they were damaged.

For this reason, minarets began to be demolished one by one in a controlled manner. During the demolition of a minaret, a piece broke off from the minaret, causing injury to a worker.


(Source: Lead Stories composite image with TikTok screenshot taken on Wed Feb 14 00:04:13 2024 UTC)

A 10-second-long video posted on TikTok on February 23, 2023, shows the same incident from another angle. Clearly visible is the logo and name of the track hoe company, "Kumcu Ali" (inset pictured above) followed by the Turkish words "İNŞAAT & HAFRİYAT" for construction and excavation. The caption in white text identifies the city and the name of the mosque. Translated by Google:

Adana Denizli Mahallesi'nde depremde hasar gören Gökoğlu Camii'nin minaresinin yıkımı esnasında yaralananlar oldu. #losadanas #adana

There were people injured during the demolition of the minaret of Gökoğlu Mosque, which was damaged in the earthquake in Denizli District of Adana. #losadanas #adana

Lead Stories was able to identify the Gökoğlu Mosque on Google Earth Pro. In decimal degrees, the coordinates of the mosque are 37.000, 35.300. Google Earth Pro On Desktop has a feature that allows historical satellite imagery to be viewed. Lead Stories was able to compare the appearance of the mosque with the minaret standing in a February 14, 2023, satellite image with a May 8, 2023, satellite image where the minaret is gone. The mosque in Adana, with the planter of trees by the street (visible in the videos), can be viewed here on Google Earth on Web. Instantstreetview.com only has street-level data of select locations in this neighborhood, and these are not near the mosque, but the shape of the mosque's dome at the address Gökoğlu Mosque Denizli 57220. Sk. No:8 01130 Seyhan Adana Turkeyare is visible in the satellite map view of the neighborhood.

Additional fact checks debunking claims involving the 2023 earthquakes in Turkey can be found here.

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  Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson lives with her family and pets on a small farm in Indiana. She founded a Facebook page and a blog called “Exploiting the Niche” in 2017 to help others learn about manipulative tactics and avoid scams on social media. Since then she has collaborated with journalists in the USA, Canada and Australia and since December 2019 she works as a Social Media Authenticity Analyst at Lead Stories.


Read more about or contact Sarah Thompson

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