The report appeared in major mainstream media outlets like the BBC and dozens of copycat sites like GossipCop.
It was based on a seven-second video taken by a fan during the band’s show in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Harry appeared to be upset and wiping his eyes and while the band performed “Diana,” a song that’s a tribute to Princess Diana.
The story line was bolstered because the video was shot hours after the band heard that Malik was quitting One Direction to lead a “more normal life…” and launch a solo career.
"Someone threw something at Harry and it hit him in the eye, which is apparently why it looked like he was crying" pic.twitter.com/qhX1vO39y4
— E. (@ejaewrecks) March 26, 2015
IM chose not to publish the story, because of the thin evidence and no confirmation from Harry or the band. Even so, the video has been viewed more than 1.1 million times on YouTube.
Now, new evidence have surfaced from eyewitnesses at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, who the provided a more plausible reason for Harry’s actions in the short video.
The fan who posted the video has come forward with more details. He said today (Mar. 28) that Harry’s reaction was caused by someone who thew something at Styles, possibly a glowstick. The object struck Harry in the face and eye.
Another fan posted a video on Twitter that she said showed Styles getting hit in the face by the glowstick.
“Someone threw something at Harry and it hit him in the eye, which is apparently why it looked like he was crying,” she wrote, confirming the alternate theory.
“Been a crazy couple of days but know that we are going to work harder than ever to deliver the best album we’ve ever made for you guys!” Louis Tomlinson wrote to fans.
Malik directly addressed his fans on his Facebook page. “I have to do what feels right in my heart. I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight,” he wrote.
Bandmates Styles, Tomlinson, Niall Horan and Liam Payne intend to to carry on without Malik, although the band’s fate remains to be seen.
Styles is also said to be working on a solo album and without him there is no band.
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