'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
Photographer shocked at how photo was 'twisted'
An image of a child purportedly lying between his parents' graves in Syria that exploded on Facebook and Twitter was actually a staged photo taken as part of an art project.
The graves were not graves but piles of stones, the orphan was not an orphan but the photographer's nephew, and the image itself was actually taken in Saudi Arabia.
The truth behind the picture, which was appropriated by people on social networks this week to reflect the tragic situation in Syria, was unearthed by Harald Doornbos, who interviewed the photographer Abdul Aziz al Otaibi on his blog.
Al-Otaibi said he was shocked by how the picture had been 'twisted', given that he made it very clear that the graves were fake when he posted it on Facebook.
One of the many versions of the image shared on Twitter (Picture: Abdul Aziz al Otaibi)
"Look, it’s not true at all that my picture has anything to do with Syria," he said. "I am really shocked how people have twisted my picture."
"I love photography," he continued. "Every artist has ideas in his head. So I had the idea to make a project whereby I show in pictures how the love of a child for his parents is irreplaceable. This love cannot be substituted by anything or anybody else, even if the parents are dead."
"I am really very annoyed by this. It is just not fair to take one of my photos totally out of context and use it for your own propaganda."
Al-Otaibi Directed Messaged the first Twitter user to re-purpose the image, @americanbadu, to ask them to correct it and explain why they claimed it was of Syria.
He received the response: "Why don’t you just let go and claim it is a picture from Syria and gain a reward from God. You are exaggerating."
Hosts of fake images circulate Facebook and Twitter every day, with pictures depicting wars and beautiful parts of the world often being Photoshopped beyond recognition.
Miley Cyrus address Robin Thicke VMA controversy: ‘He wanted me as naked as possible, but I got the heat because I’m a woman’
Most expensive city to live in for expatriates: Luanda, Angola takes number one spot with Hong Kong and Zurich in top three
Irish tourist filmed fighting with shopkeepers in Turkey says they 'messed with the wrong man'
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal get peerages
Moody neurotics are more likely to be creative geniuses, study says
- 1 Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe Ned Stark's son may have a twin sister
- 2 Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
- 4 iPhone 6s camera: features to include 4K video camera and flash for selfies
- 5 A pint of water every day is the key to losing weight, scientists say
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leader in the e-cigarette ...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leader in the e-cigarette ...