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- This is unfounded.
A recent blog post made an audacious claim about the Australian military vaccinating people at gunpoint is being shared on social media, but it’s untrue.
"Australian military being trained to **force vaccinate** in door-to-door attacks," the Nov. 1 headline says. The post goes on to claim that "members of the armed forces are being trained to go door-to-door and forcibly vaccinate every person in the country at gunpoint" and "chase anyone trying to escape into nearby woods or other areas, to grab them too — at gunpoint."
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.)
Neither the post nor a video embedded in the post cites a source.
We reached out to the Australian Defence Force about the claim.
"This claim is misinformation and completely untrue," the agency said in a statement.
The Defence Force isn’t administering vaccines, but it is participating in something called Operation COVID-19 Assist, which it established in April 2020 "to provide customized support to state and territory authorities, to reinforce and expand their capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic."
Early in the pandemic, members of the Defence Force provided support for contact tracing, and helped police with mandatory quarantine arrangements for people arriving to the country from abroad.
But we found no evidence to corroborate the claims made in the blog post. We did find an August fact-check by AAP, which looked into an allegation that Sky News had reported something similar. The news organization found that it had "no basis in fact."
We agree. We rate this claim False.
Blog post, Nov. 1, 2021
AAP Factcheck, The Australian army isn’t forcibly vaccinating NSW residents, Aug. 3, 2021
Australian Department of Defense, Latest updates — Operation COVID-19 Assist, Nov. 8, 2021
Australian Department of Defense, Expansion of ADF support to COVID-19 assist, April 1, 2020
Statement from the Australian Defence Force, Nov. 5, 2021
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