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FB page passes off US standoff photo as NPA handiwork

A photo collage assembled by the Armed Forces of the Philippines Information Exchange Facebook page depicting the New People’s Army as the top human rights violator wrongly includes a photo from the 2016 protest action against an underground oil pipeline in North Dakota in the United States.

The erroneous photo appears on the lower left panel published in the Dec. 11 post which reads:

New People's Army (NPA) | The NUMBER ONE Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Violator.
Share and use the hashtags

A reverse image search traced the original photo to an Oct. 28, 2016 Associated Press story about roadblocks set up on Highway 1806 near Cannon Ball, North Dakota by protesters evicted from a private property to pave the way for the four-state, nearly 2,000-km pipeline that would carry crude from that state to Illinois.

The photo of a roadblock on a bridge created with two burned-out heavy trucks was the one misused by the Armed Forces of the Philippines Information Exchange page.

AP’s Oct. 28, 2016 story and photo were run by NBC News and Fox News in the U.S., CTV News and CBC in Canada, and Daily Mail in the U.K., among others.

Original photo taken by the Associated Press in North Dakota in October 2016

The other photos in the Facebook post were of the NPA allegedly torching heavy equipment in T'boli town (upper left), “accidentally’ killing a baby at an ambush in Bukidnon (upper right) and allegedly ambushing the police in Motiong, Samar (lower right).

As of writing, the post has 609 reactions, 20 comments, and 417 shares. It has also been shared by Philippine-based military and police units such as the 7th Civil-Military Operations Battalion, Mayoyao Municipal Police Station and 86th Infantry-Highlander Battalion.

The AFP Information Exchange Facebook page describes itself thus: “This page contains information published by AFP to promote the security of the Filipino People and the state. Be informed of relevant security issues and be safe from security threats.” It has 50,105 likes and 52,571 followers.

The page also has Twitter and YouTube accounts. (RBP)


7th Civil-Military Operations Battalion [@7cmobn]. (2020, December 14). [Shared post]. Facebook. Retrieved from

86th Infantry - Highlander Battalion. (2020, December 12). [Shared post]. Facebook. Retrieved from

Armed Forces of the Philippines Information Exchange. (2020, December 11). New People's Army (NPA) | The NUMBER ONE Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Violator. Share and use the hashtags #AyawKoSaCPPNPANDF #GustoKoKapayapaan #HumanRightsDay. [Facebook update]. Retrieved from

Caduaya, E. (2017, November 26). Duterte ends peace talks with communist rebels. Newsline. Retrieved December from

Jubelag, J. (2020, July 22). NPAs set heavy equipment on fire in T'boli town. Manila Bulletin. Retrieved December 15, 2020, from

Mayoyao Municipal Police Station [@mayoyaomunicipalpolicestation]. (2020, December 13). [Shared post]. Facebook. Retrieved from

MacPherson, J., & Nicholson, B. (2016, October 28). New standoff in North Dakota pipeline protest ebbs without violence. CTV News. Retrieved from

NPA admits 'accidental' killing of infant in Bukidnon ambush on cops. (2017, November 14). Interaksyon. Retrieved from

Oil pipeline protesters burn vehicles, set roadblock. (2016, October 28). Fox News. Retrieved from

Standoff over Dakota Access pipeline quiets after highway blocked with burned vehicles. (2016, October 29). CBC. Retrieved from

The Latest: Teepees removed from cleared protest camp. (2016, October 28). Daily Mail. Retrieved from


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