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Video falsely claims Japan donated its largest and strongest ship to PH

JS Izumo, considered one of the Japanese Navy’s largest ships, was in the Philippines in August not because Japan donated it, but rather to participate in the Indo-Pacific Deployment (IPD) Exercises 2023. 

But in an 8-minute YouTube video on Dec. 7, TECH-89M posted a thumbnail showing a picture of JS Izumo ship bearing two Philippine flags, which creates the impression that it belonged to the Philippines. 

The thumbnail caption and headline about the supposed donation read: 

Nagulat ang Mundo!!! Nag donate ang Japan ng Pinakamalakas at Pinakamalaking Barko nito sa Pilipinas (The world is surprised!!! Japan donated its strongest and biggest ship to the Philippines)

JS Izumo ship docked in Manila on Aug. 24 for the Indo-Pacific Deployment (IPD) Exercises 2023, a five-month-long operation participated in by the naval forces of the US, Australia and the Philippines, and departed on Aug. 31. 

A reverse image search, meanwhile, reveals that the thumbnail photo was taken at Changi Naval Base in May 2019 in Singapore.

At the same time, the video, at the 1:05 mark, shows a clip of the Japanese Coast Guard Akitsushima (PLH-32) while also misstating it was the largest and biggest ship Japan had donated to the country. But it correctly said the ship was in the country for the first trilateral military exercise.

The ship docked at Manila South Harbor on June 1 to join the trilateral exercises or “Kaagapay” in Mariveles, Bataan, a weeklong exercise that aims to strengthen the relationship between the countries through communication exercises, maneuvering drills, photo exercises, maritime law enforcement training, search and rescue and passing exercises.

The video inserted a clip of the Akitsushima in Tokyo with the Gozabune Atakemaru vessel, a famous tourist attraction that offers tours to iconic landmarks like the Rainbow Bridge, Tokyo Gate Bridge and Tokyo Tower, at its tail.

As of writing, the YouTube video by TECH-89M has gained over 9,900 views.  The channel has more than 25,000 subscribers and had previously been fact-checked by Rappler for another video falsely claiming that the Philippines has acquired military helicopters from the US. (KM)  


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