A Fabricated Caricature about a Ukrainian Fencer Circulated Under the Name of “Charlie Hebdo”

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On July 29-30, Georgian– and Russian-language (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) Facebook accounts published an alleged cover of the French satirical magazine “Charlie Hebdo” dated August 2, 2023. The cover features a caricature of Ukrainian fencer Olga Kharlan, who refused to shake hands with Russian fencer Anna Smirnova at the Fencing World Championships in Milan. The cover also features the following inscription: “True pride of her country.”

The disseminated caricature and the cover are fabricated. The latest issue of “Charlie Hebdo” was released on July 26, and it deals with the topic of police violence in the French city of Marseille and leaving one of them in pre-trial detention.

The viral cover of “Charlie Hebdo” features serial number #1619, and the release date of August 2, 2023. According to the publication’s official website, the latest issue of “Charlie Hebdo” was released on July 26 and is number 1618. A similar caricature cannot be found on the Facebook page of “Charlie Hebdo” either. 

The July 26 issue of “Charlie Hebdo” concerns the incident of police violence in the French city of Marseille, which occurred during the demonstrations that began after the killing of a 17-year-old youth by a policeman in Paris. Four police officers were charged in this case, and one of them was sentenced to pre-trial detention.The cover shows the following inscriptions: “Marseille: the police are on edge”; “Give us a chance to work.”

As for the Ukrainian fencer Olga Kharlan, who is the person depicted on the fabricated caricature, she defeated the Russian fencer Anna Smirnova in a match at the Fencing World Championships in Milan, and when Smirnova tried to shake her hand, the Ukrainian fencer reached forward and did not shake her opponent’s hand. In the end, the International Fencing Federation gave Kharlan a two-month disqualification, but still allowed her to participate in next year’s Paris Championship.

Fabricated covers about Ukraine in the name of Charlie Hebdo have been verified by “Myth Detector” in the past as well. For more, see:

About the Source

Georgian-language Facebook user Nero Nero regularly publishes posts of anti-Ukrainian and anti-Western content. The user has published disinformation as well.


The article has been written in the framework of Facebook’s fact-checking program. You can read more about the restrictions that Facebook may impose based on this article via this link. You can find information about appealing or editing our assessment via this link.

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Topic: Politics
Country: France, Ukraine
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