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- This photo was taken in October in Latvia, which requires proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID-19 to patronize some businesses.
On Dec. 2, Germany announced unvaccinated residents would face stricter restrictions. People seeking entrance to bars, restaurants and some stores would have to show proof of vaccination or evidence that they recovered from a recent infection. But an image that is being described on social media as an illustration of the country’s new rules wasn’t even taken there.
"Picture from a German mall separating the vaccinated and unvaccinated," the post says. "I’m not here to compare anything in history but to just call out how dumb this fear mongering sh-- is. Branch Covidians are the craziest people in the world."
This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)
"This photo is from Latvia," Burger said, according to a translation of his tweets from Dutch to English. He also shared a screenshot showing where the photo was first posted: in an Oct. 13 Facebook post by Latvian politician Aldis Gobzems, who has opposed vaccination mandates.
A translation of Gobzems’ post from Latvian to English says that the picture shows him and his wife, Krista Gobzema. Proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID-19 is required at businesses in the country except those providing basic services, such as groceries. Residents can get digital COVID-19 certificates, showing that they have been vaccinated against COVID-19 or recovered from the virus. Each certificate has a unique QR code that can be scanned to confirm this.
"We have children together," the post says. "We are separated by a virus-proof fence. Kristai has a QR code, I don’t have one."
We rate claims that this photo was taken in Germany False.
Facebook post, Dec. 3, 2021
The New York Times, Germany Shuts Unvaccinated People Out of Much of Public Life, Dec. 2, 2021
Peter Burger tweets, Dec. 2, 2021
Aldis Gobzems Facebook post, Oct. 13, 2021
Arbiter tweet, Dec. 2, 2021
Aldis Gobzems tweet, Dec. 2, 2021
U.S. Embassy in Latvia, COVID-19 information, last updated Dec. 1, 2021
Mix News, Journalists found out whether Gobzems, who had been ill with COVID, managed to infect others (VIDEO), Oct. 22, 2021
Eng.LSM.lv, Hundreds protest against 'mandatory vaccination' in Latvia, Aug. 5, 2021
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