Spanish agency admits photo mix-up

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Spanish news agency EFE said Friday it had sent a photo supposedly of injured infants in Western Sahara which turned out to be a four-year-old image of children hurt in Gaza.

The photo, purchased from a web site which made the original error, was published in major daily newspapers including the leading daily El Pais, and the centre-right daily El Mundo.

It showed infants with their heads wrapped in bandages being treated in hospital. In El Pais, the photo carried the caption: "Two injured Saharan children are treated at a hospital in Laayoune," the capital of the Western Sahara.

EFE's service had credited the photo to Sahara activists.

The image had been bought from, a web site grouping supporters of the region, which incorrectly described the photo as being of children from Western Sahara.

The agency withdrew the photo immediately after it learned of the error and filed an explanatory story, said EFE spokeswoman Ana Vaca de Osma Zunzunegui.

Like other news providers, EFE has been forced to rely on outside sources because Morocco is not allowing journalists into the area.

© 2010 AFP

1 Comment To This Article

  • gabriel posted:

    on 13th November 2010, 03:27:53 - Reply

    not just this big failure,other spanish TV channels are really falling in hysteria with propaganda of sahraouis agents.

    like this woman "crying" and reporting about the same children in photos as if she know their family,is this not strange??