A post shared on Facebook claims to show an image of a mural depicting a crucified journalist, attributing the creation to street artist and political activist Banksy.
The mural was done by an Egyptian-born artist in California and was created using AI tools.
Approximately 85 journalists and media workers have been confirmed killed, with three being Lebanese media members, during Israel’s invasion of the Gaza Strip and war against Hamas, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Experts with the United Nations (UN) recently condemned the deaths and alleged censorship of journalists in the region since the war broke out, a statement from the organization read.
The Facebook post appears to show a realistic mural of a journalist nailed to a crucifix, wearing a blue vest and hardhat, while also holding a camera. “Banksy on the murder of journalists in Gaza,” the post reads. (RELATED: Image Claims To Show a Israeli Sniper Bullet.)
The image is not a real mural and was not designed by Banksy. A reverse image search found that the art traced back to a December 2023 post done by designer and artist Hassan Ragab on X and Instagram. The post states that it is a digitally-rendered piece and is not real.
“THIS IS A DIGITAL ARTWORK CREATED USING AI. NOT A REAL PHOTO,” the disclaimer reads in part. The caption of the original post goes on to state the estimated death toll of journalists during the war in Israel and Gaza.
“I hope that you know there are millions of children whom you have never met and probably can’t understand, who are facing the horrors of receiving bombs instead of gifts, and the journalists are being punished for telling us the truth,” the post concludes.
Ragab also debunked claims that the art belonged to Banksy, stating “I don’t know how to feel about this…. but I love Banksy, so no hard feelings!!”