US-led Coalition in Iraq & Syria

Civilians in the ruins of Mosul city. (Maranie R. Staab)

Belligerent
US-led Coalition
Country
Iraq
Syria
start date
end date
Civilian Harm Status
Belligerent Assessment
Declassified Documents

Incident Code

CS792

Incident date

May 9, 2017

Location

البوكمال, Abu Kamal, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

34.466049, 40.907593 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A number of civilians were reported injured alongside ISIS fighters, after Coalition aircraft disrupted a public execution by ISIS in Abu Kamal’s Fayhaa Square.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, “the Coalition carried out airstrikes and targeted an Islamic State headquarters in al-Bokamal city on the border with Iraq. The bombing killed at least three members of the organization and injured about 20 other people, mostly civilians. The bombing was followed by the area being targeted with machine guns, while local sources confirmed that the bombing coincided with preparations in Fayhaa Square in the city for an execution.”

The event appears to have been linked to actions by UK forces within the Coalition, with the RAF reporting that “A Reaper intervened during a public execution staged by Daesh in Abu Kamal, Syria, killing a Daesh guard and dispersing the crowd gathered to witness the atrocity.”

Despite acknowledging the presence of a large number of civilians, a UK Reaper nevertheless released a munition, the UK’s MoD reported: “An RAF Reaper remotely piloted aircraft observed a group of Daesh fighters in Abu Kamal, eastern Syria, mustering a large crowd of civilians in one of the town’s main streets on Tuesday 9 May. When a van then unloaded two shackled prisoners in front of the crowd, it became clear that Daesh were organising a public execution.

“Given the large number of civilians present, the Reaper’s crew could not target directly the Daesh fighters about to carry out the murders. However, two armed extremists were stationed as sentries on the roof of a building overlooking the scene. A Hellfire missile was fired immediately, and scored a direct hit which not only killed one of the sentries but also brought the execution to an immediate halt, as the Daesh fighters fled the scene, and the crowd of civilians dispersed.”

The RAF also released a video of the strike in September 2017. Air Commodore Johnny Stringer, commander of UK air operations in Iraq and Syria at the time, told the Daily Telegraph: “The individual whom we engaged was a sniper in over-watch to shoot civilians who sought to move away from the execution, let alone to protect the planned execution itself. That particular example for us very much brought it home because civilians had been herded in, forced literally at gunpoint, to go and watch this going on in their hundreds.”

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of the same year – the US-led Coalition assessed this event as ‘non credible’, noting: “May 9, 2017, in Abu Kamal, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was determined that, more likely than not, civilian casualties did not occur as a result of a Coalition action. 1457/S697 37SFU762140”.

The Coalition published a location for the assessment identifying to within 100 metres the area where it had focused its review.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    11–20
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

CJTF–OIR Declassified Assessment and Press Release

Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.

Declassified Assessment Press Release

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    Insufficient evidence of civilian harm
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Abu Kamal, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU762140
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • May 9, 2017, in Abu Kamal, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was determined that, more likely than not, civilian casualties did not occur as a result of a Coalition action. 1457/S697 37SFU762140

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For May 8th-9th, the Coalition reported: “Near Abu Kamal, one strike destroyed an ISIS oil rig.”

For May - 9th - 10th, the Coalition reported: "Near Abu Kamal, two strikes [1 British] engaged an ISIS sniper and destroyed a front-end loader"

UK Military
  • English
    /
    Original

Tuesday 9 May – A Reaper intervened during a public execution staged by Daesh in Abu Kamal, Syria, killing a Daesh guard and dispersing the crowd gathered to witness the atrocity… The RAF is continuing to support Iraqi forces in their effort to liberate western Mosul. While the operating environment in the city is very challenging, particularly given the closely-packed buildings, very narrow streets, and the density of the urban population, our aircrew have continued to deliver precision strikes in close support of Iraqi troops on the ground. Daesh’s current tactics, including the illegal use of civilians as human shields, and fighting from sites such as schools, hospitals, religious sites and civilian neighbourhoods, increases the risk to innocent life. While no military operations come without risk, particularly in dense urban environments and against such inhuman Daesh tactics, the RAF continues to take all steps necessary to minimise civilian casualties. An RAF Reaper remotely piloted aircraft observed a group of Daesh fighters in Abu Kamal, eastern Syria, mustering a large crowd of civilians in one of the town’s main streets on Tuesday 9 May. When a van then unloaded two shackled prisoners in front of the crowd, it became clear that Daesh were organising a public execution. Given the large number of civilians present, the Reaper’s crew could not target directly the Daesh fighters about to carry out the murders. However, two armed extremists were stationed as sentries on the roof of a building overlooking the scene. A Hellfire missile was fired immediately, and scored a direct hit which not only killed one of the sentries but also brought the execution to an immediate halt, as the Daesh fighters fled the scene, and the crowd of civilians dispersed.’

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    11–20
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Incident Code

CS819

Incident date

May 13, 2017

Location

الثورة‎, Tabaqah, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.8295049, 38.5360909 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

In its July 2017 civilian casualty report, the Coalition denied involvement in an alleged incident that was previously unknown to Airwars.

In the report, the Coalition wrote: “May 13, 2017, near Tabqah, Syria, via social media report: No Coalition strikes were conducted on that day in the geographic area of the reported civilian casualties. The closest strike to the report of possible civilian casualties was over 2 km away.”

No further details are currently available.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

CJTF–OIR Declassified Assessment and Press Release

Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.

Declassified Assessment Press Release

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Tabqah, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • No Coalition strikes were conducted on that day in the geographic area of the reported civilian casualties. The closest strike to the report of possible civilian casualties was over 2 km away.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For May 12-13th the Coalition reported: “Near Raqqah, five strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed two fighting positions, a front-end loader, an ISIS crane, and a house-born improvised explosive device.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS862

Incident date

May 24, 2017

Location

Raqqah, Tashih, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.948672, 38.990525 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

In an incident not previously tracked by Airwars, on April 1st 2017 the Coalition said it had concluded an assessment of a self-reported civilian harm claim “near Raqqa, Syria”. According to the Coalition report, “ 110. May 24, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via self-report: After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.”

The Coalition shared the location of this assessed strike with Airwars. The location was stated as al Tashih in Raqqa.

No additional details are presently known.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

CJTF–OIR Declassified Assessment and Press Release

Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.

Declassified Assessment Press Release

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    Insufficient evidence of civilian harm
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SDV9914578255
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Aug 4, 2017
  • After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For May 23rd-24th, the Coalition reported: “Near Raqqah, three strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units; destroyed three fighting positions and a mortar system.” It also later noted that “Near Raqqah, Syria, three strikes destroyed eight command and control nodes and destroyed a VBIED facility” and that “Near Raqqah, Syria, May 23, two strikes destroyed three command and control nodes.”
For May 24th-25th, the Coalition reported: "Near Raqqah, 15 strikes [1 British] engaged 12 ISIS tactical units; and destroyed five fighting positions, four ISIS dump trucks, four vehicles, two artillery systems, a front-end loader, and a weapons cache." For May 24th, it added "Near Raqqah, Syria, May 24, four strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit; destroyed six fighting positions, a mortar system, and a vehicle."

UK Military
  • English
    /
    Original

"Wednesday 24 May – a Reaper attacked near Raqqa, whilst Tornados prosecuted four Daesh targets in Mosul…A Reaper, conducting surveillance south-west of Raqqa on Wednesday 24 May, kept watch on a small group of terrorists and was able to conduct a successful attack with a Hellfire missile. In Mosul, when advancing Iraqi security forces found themselves facing two buildings defended by a Daesh heavy machine-gun, a sniper team and at least one individual in a suicide-bomb vest, they called for assistance from a flight of Tornados. Our aircraft delivered a very precise simultaneous attack with two Paveway IVs which destroyed both terrorist strongpoints. The Tornados then hit a third terrorist position, again with a Paveway, whilst a second flight bombed a fourth position."

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1265

Incident date

July 24, 2017

Location

سوق المواشي والحبوب, Al Mayadin, Sheep market, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

35.015254, 40.413338 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Four members of IS died when the car they were in was allegedly struck by the Coalition, local media reported. One source, Fresh Syria, also said that an unspecified number of nearby civilians were wounded in the event.

According to Fresh Syria “aircraft of the International Coalition targeted a car, believed to belong to ISIS, in the sheep market area city of Mayadeen, leading to the death of those inside and wounding of a number of other civilians.”

On July 24th, Alghadalsoury reported that “Coalition aircraft launched two raids earlier on the road to the sheep market in the city of Mayadeen. The first targeted a Daesh car and led to the deaths of four of its members, while the second targeted the same place and resulted in no injuries.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (7) [ collapse]

CJTF–OIR Declassified Assessment and Press Release

Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.

Declassified Assessment Press Release

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near al Mayadin, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • May 31, 2018
  • After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For July 24th-25th: “Near Dayr Az Zawr, five strikes destroyed 14 ISIS oil stills and five well-heads.” It later also added that “On July 24, near Abu Kamal, Syria, one strike destroyed three ISIS oil stills and a vehicle.”

French Military
  • English
    /
    Original

In the last week (20th-27th) France reports carrying out two strikes in Raqqah, destroying two ISIL combat positions. Task Force (TF) Wagram carried out 21 artillery strikes in Mosul. The overall record of air activity since September 19th 2014 amounts to 1,324 strikes, 2,092 targets destroyed and 6,857 sorties.

‘OPÉRATION CHAMMAL SITUATION En Syrie, Dans la ville de Raqqah, Daech continue de perdre du terrain, jour après jour, face aux Forces Démocratiques Syriennes. Les combattants terroristes continuent néanmoins de disposer de solides positions défensives dans le cœur de la ville, à partir desquelles ils mènent des contre-attaques régulières et des actions de harcèlement. En Irak, Les forces de sécurités irakiennes poursuivent leurs opérations de sécurisation de la ville de Mossoul, face à des équipes isolées de combattants qui continuent de mener des actions symboliques de harcèlement. Dans le même temps, Daech consolide ses positions autour de Tal Afar, pour tenter de résister à l’offensive prochaine de la Coalition pour libérer aussi cette ville. Daech poursuit par ailleurs ses actions de diversion et de harcèlement, en se concentrant dans les régions de l’Anbar et d’Hawijah. Certaines actions ont également été menées cette semaine dans l’Ouest de l’Irak, dans la région de Rutbah. ACTIVITÉS DE LA FORCE Cette semaine, les aéronefs ont réalisé 45 sorties aériennes dont 31 de reconnaissance armée et d’appui au sol (CAS), ainsi que 04 missions de recueil de renseignement et 06 de ravitaillement en vol. Un C135-FR récemment déployé a en effet réalisé de nombreuses missions en quelques jours à peine, soutenant ainsi, à son niveau, la bascule des efforts de la Coalition vers les autres bastions de Daech. Deux frappes ont été menées dans le cadre de la bataille de Raqqah, détruisant deux positions de combattants ennemies, au contact des troupes alliées engagées. De ces positions, des tireurs de Daech tenaient sous leur feu les soldats alliés à une centaine de mètres à peine. La Task Force (TF) Wagram a réalisé 21 missions de tir dont 07 de harcèlement et 14 d’éclairement. Ces missions interdisent une offensive de contre des terroristes vers Mossoul. Le bilan global de l’activité aérienne depuis le 19 septembre 2014 s’élève à 1 324 frappes, 2 092 objectifs détruits et 6 857 sorties. Le bilan global de l’activité artillerie atteint 1 331 missions.’

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1461

Incident date

September 9, 2017

Location

Sabha and al Jadid crossing, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

35.258358, 40.330682 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A single source, LCCSY, reported that “two people were injured in the air raids of the International Alliance on the slopes of Al-Sabha and Al Jadid in the eastern countryside”.

No further details are currently available.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Sabha and Jadid river crossings (معبر صبحة والجدید). Two possible locations for these river crossings are: 35.258358, 40.330682 (Jadid) and 35.284181, 40.234852 (Sabha)

  • Two possible locations for the reported river crossings

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Sabha and al Jadid crossing, Deir Ez Zor, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFV210025
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 28, 2018
  • After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For September 8th – 9th the Coalition publicly reported no strikes in the vicnity of Dayr Az Zawr.

For September 9th – 10th the Coalition reported “Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed two fighting positions and a vehicle.”

UK Military
  • English
    /
    Original

‘Saturday 9 September – a Reaper destroyed a motorcycle and trailer carrying three terrorists north-east of Dayr az Zawr… The following day [Sept 9th], another Reaper flew a further patrol in the same area of Syria, and tracked a group of three terrorists on a motorcycle and trailer. The Reaper’s crew waited patiently until the targets were in open countryside before firing a Hellfire which scored a direct hit.’

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1787

Incident date

August 3, 2018

Location

الشعفة, Al Sha'afa (possibly east of village), Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

34.57888, 40 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Three civilians were injured in an alleged Coalition airstrike near the village of al Sha’afa, local sources reported.

According to Sound and Picture, “vehicles carrying displaced civilians” were struck by Coalition aircraft, resulting in “a number of wounded”. This was reiterated by Marsad al Hassaka.

The Al Sha’afa Facebook page was the only source that identified the three harmed civilians as Ali al-Hihu, Musa al-Hihouh and “one of al-Fayadh’s sons“. The report stressed that “Thank God, no one died”.

One report named the ‘badia’ (desert) area as the location of the event – which would place it east of the village.

Step News reported that “Three members of the Islamic] State organization were killed in a coalition air strike targeting a car in the eastern town of Sousse # Deir al-Azur this morning.” It is not clear if this relates to the above event.

In the first of their September 2020 civilian casualty reports, the US-led Coalition assessed reports that they were responsible for civilian harm in this strike as “non-credible”, stating that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area at that time.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Ali al-Hihu Adult male injured
  • Musa al-Hihouh Adult male injured
  • Son of al-Fayadh Age unknown male injured

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (4) [ collapse]

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU774280
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Sep 9, 2020
  • Aug. 3, 2018, in Al Sha’afa, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 3176/CS1787 37SFU774280

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For August 3rd, the Coalition reported that “On August 3 in Syria, Coalition military forces conducted four strikes consisting of six engagements against Daesh targets. Near Abu Kamal, four strikes engaged one Daesh tactical unit, and destroyed five Daesh vehicles."

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI135a

Incident date

November 7, 2015

Location

Qayarrah, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

35.78902, 43.28817 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

According to a field investigation conducted by reporters Azmah Khan and Anand Gopal for the New York Times Magazine, one civilian was killed and one injured by a Coalition airstrike on Qayyarah – both of them young children. The Coalition admitted the casualties in early 2020.

Khan and Ghopal report the following: “Tibea Alla, a 10-year-old girl, was playing with her brother outside, when City Hall, which is located behind the Department of Education Storage Facility and used by ISIS, was hit by an airstrike on or near 11/7/2015. Shrapnel from the blast killed Tibea, who had been playing nearby, and wounded her younger brother, who lost his arm.”

In its December 2019 civilian casualty assessment – published on February 13th 2020 – the US-led Coalition conceded the event, noting that “Nov. 7, 2015, in Qayyarah, Iraq, via New York Times report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed and one other unintentionally wounded as a result of the strike.  2348 38SLE453619”.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Tibea Alla 10 years old female killed
  • Brother of Tibea Child male Younger than 10 injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (2) [ collapse]

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible / Substantiated
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    No reason given
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    1
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    in Qayyarah, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLE453619
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Feb 13, 2020
  • Nov. 7, 2015, in Qayyarah, Iraq, via New York Times report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed and one other unintentionally wounded as a result of the strike. 2348 38SLE453619

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1968

Incident date

October 27, 2021

Location

الصبحة, Al Sabha, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Geolocation

35.896421, 39.904919 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A male civilian, co-chair of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, was shot and killed by alleged Coalition forces and/or Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in on October 27, 2021.

According to a tweet from @Sada_AlSharqieh, a media organization covering Eastern Syria, Samer Al-Abdullah, the co-chair of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, in charge of running the affairs of the Health Committee in the Council, was killed in an airdrop operation carried out by the Coalition forces and Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

@DeirEzzor24 reported that Samer Al-Abdullah was killed by mistake when SDF forces were searching for a wanted person, adding that Samer was a member of the Future Syria Party affiliated with the administration.

The correspondent of the “Ein al-Furat” network said that the SDF Asayish carried out a landing operation to arrest a person named Shayesh al-Hassan. “When al-Hassan fled, the deputy co-presidency of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, in charge of the affairs of the Health Committee, left his house, thinking that the shooting was on his house and that he should flee from it, which prompted the Asayish forces to shoot him, killing him instantly.” @baznewz named the target of the operation to be the sons of “Salem al-Baghdeh,” Abu Younis, a leader in the Islamic State.

However, @humam_isa reported that the shooting came after misleading information reached the Coalition forces. @Sada_AlSharqieh tweeted that Samer Al-Abdullah had been threatened by several parties who wanted him to leave work in the Civil Council and Nedaa Post stated that the SDF had arrested other members of the council. Ida2at even added that there were accusations that the SDF intended to kill Samer and it was part of an “assassination operation”. The “Al-Shaitat official” page quoted a source as saying that “Al-Abdullah is an educated person who knows that anyone who goes out during a raid or landing operation is targeted, and therefore he will not put himself at risk to look at the raid, which makes it likely that the cadres will arrange the operation to get rid of him.”

Sources were conflicted as to what time the event occurred, with @EuphratesPost pinpointing the raid to dawn while Jisr TV reported that the shooting occurred in the evening.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Samer Al-Abdullah Adult male killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Small arms and light weapons
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attackers
    US-led Coalition, Syrian Democratic Forces
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (28) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • Samer Al-Abdullah, the co-chair of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, killed in an alleged Coalition airdrop operation on October 27, 2021. (Image posted by @Sada_AlSharqieh)
  • Samer Al-Abdullah, the co-chair of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, killed in an alleged Coalition airdrop operation on October 27, 2021. (Image posted by @DeirEzzorNow)
  • The official in the Civil Council of the "Self-Administration", Samer Al-Abdullah, was killed "by mistake", during a raid carried out by the international coalition forces and "SDF" near his house in a town in Deir ez-Zor governorate, targeting ISIS cells. (Image posted by @AsharqNewsSYR)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic image of Samer Al-Abdullah, the co-chair of the Deir Ezzor Civil Council, killed in an alleged Coalition airdrop operation on October 27, 2021. (Image posted by @baznewz)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Al Sabha (الصبحة), for which the generic coordinates are: 35.896421, 39.904919. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Syrian Democratic Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Syrian Democratic Forces
  • Syrian Democratic Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Small arms and light weapons
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attackers
    US-led Coalition, Syrian Democratic Forces
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (28) [ collapse]