Facebook user Abuladze Paata promoted a piece of disinformation in social networks. In particular, he claimed that whilst visiting the White House, Volodymyr Zelenskyy presented congressmen with the flag of Ukraine with a Nazi symbol on it. This false information was also promoted in the Russian language through Facebook and VKontakte (see link 1 and link 2).

Fake Photograph Authentic Photograph

In fact, the photograph which the aforementioned Facebook user published in doctored and is in fact a reverse reflection of real shot. In the original photograph, US Vice-President Kamala Harris stands on the left whilst the First Lady of the US, Jill Biden, is on the right. Therefore, the flag is also rotated and the Nazi symbol is nowhere to be seen on the original photograph.

In reality, the flag which the President of Ukraine presented to US congressmen during his 21 December 2022 visit to the USA was given by the Ukrainian troops during his visit to Bakhmut. There is no Nazi SS symbol in the highlighted section of the authentic photograph but features the signature of the 46 Aviation Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The authentic photograph of the flag shows that the highlighted section contains the signatures of the 46 Aviation Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine – "46 ДШВ" which stands for 46 Okrema Air Assault Brigade/46 окрема десантно-штурмова бригада (see zoomed out photograph) and not the SS Nazi symbol.

At the same time, in accordance with the Ukrainian fact-checking organisation Stopfake, the signature on the flag is also confirmed by the Ukrainian service members. It was officially reported by the 46 Air Assault Brigade of the AFU: “AFU service members put their autographs on the flag after receiving awards by the head of state during his visit to Bakhmut.”

Therefore, the photograph disseminated by the Facebook user is falsified and does not reflect reality. The authentic photograph does not feature the Nazi symbol but the signatures of the 46 Air Assault Brigade of the AFU. Therefore, the claim that the flag presented by the President of Ukraine to the US congressmen had Nazi symbols on it is FALSE.


This article was produced as part of Facebook’s Fact-checking Programme. Given the rating, Facebook may impose different restrictions – click here for full information. For information on issuing a correction or to dispute a rating, please see here.