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
Airwars Grading
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CS1961

Incident date

July 16, 2021

Location

ذيبان, Thiban, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Airwars assessment

A man and his son were reportedly killed in a raid in Deir Ezzor’s Thiban town carried out by Syrian Democratic Forces with support of the US-led coalition at dawn on July 16, 2021.

The dead were identified as Miteb Sherida Al-Ghadir and his son Ahmed.

@Sada_AlSharqieh said they had been grazing their sheep at the time of the incident and “had no links with the terrorist organization ISIS or any other party”. NPA Syria meanwhile reported that two members of Islamic State had been killed, quoting a military source in the Syrian Democratic Forces. However, the ISIS members they were referring to were not named.

The Syrian Democratic Forces shot the two men dead, according to Jesr Press, when “a number of people fled for fear of arbitrary arrests” and “the patrol members opened fire directly on these people”. NPA Syria reported that a military source told them that the forces, “with the support of the International Coalition, carried out a landing operation on the Al-Latwa neighborhood in the town of Thiban, where clashes took place with ISIS members.”

Eyewitnesses told Furat SY that a “force consisting of several cars raided civilian homes, without warning, accompanied by indiscriminate shooting between the houses with the aim of terrorizing the ‘wanted’”. The two men were shot in front of their house, according to its reporting. “This incident sparked a wave of panic among the civilians and generated a state of anger and frustration among the relatives of the victims, forcing the SDF to withdraw from the town,” it added.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • 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 (SDF)
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic image of Mutaib Sherida Al-Ghadeer, who was killed in a raid in the town of Thiban on July 16, 2021. (Image posted by @YusufAd76532779)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic image of Ahmed Sherida Al-Ghadeer, who was killed in a raid in the town of Thiban on July 16, 2021. (Image posted by @YusufAd76532779)

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • 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 (SDF)
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1960

Incident date

July 15, 2021

Location

القائم, Al Qa’em, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Airwars assessment

A civilian was reportedly shot dead during a raid on the outskirts of Al-Zar village carried out by the US-led Coalition alongside the Syrian Democratic Forces, according to multiple sources, at dawn on July 15, 2021. A single source – Furat News – also reported that a girl was injured in the incident.

The dead civilian was identified by multiple sources as Riad Ali Al-Khuzam. Syrian Network for Human Rights reported that he was shot by personnel from the Syrian Democratic Forces during the raid. Al-Khuzam was allegedly from the village of Al-Maray’iyah but lived in Al-Busaira while working on the oil fields. Euphrates Post reported he was a displaced person.

Sputnik reported that the operation “resulted in the killing of civilians and the kidnapping of dozens of others” but did not provide any other details of how many or who civilians were involved.

According to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, Amjad Al-Sari from the Ain Al-Furat satellite television network said the raid involved “26 military vehicles, 5 helicopters, a number of drones and laser-correction aircraft” which arrived in the village at around 2am.

Eye of Euphrates gave the following account from a civil source: “The international coalition carried out an airdrop operation on a house in the village of Al-Zar, east of Deir Ezzor, in which four military helicopters and two drones participated.” It added, “The targeted person resisted the international coalition forces and fled within the agricultural lands, after which the planes bombed the area with several missiles, which led to his arrest and detention, and the injury of a girl with several shrapnel.”

Deir Ezzor 24 said the operation targeted a house near the “Abu Saad” mosque, arresting a man named Saleh Abu Sumaya and his wife. It reported that Abu Samaya had been arming Islamic State and organising assassinations for the group.
It continued, “During the operation, clashes took place between the SDF and persons from Azzir village for about half an hour as they refused to surrender, but helicopters targeted their place with a guided missile and sound bombs forcing them to surrender.”

Euphrates News added that two houses were targeted in the raid, “the house of Khader Rajab Al-Sabti near the Abu Saad Mosque and another house belonging to a member of the “Al-Munkar” family, inhabited by displaced people from the village of Al-Hari in the city of Al-Bukamal.” In addition to arresting “Saleh Abu Sumaya and his wife”, six others were arrested on charges of belonging to ISIS.

The incident occured at 3:00 am local time.

Summary

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

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image of Riad Ali Al-Khuzam, from the village of Al-Maray’iyah, who was killed in a raid near the Al Qa’em Syrian-Iraqi border on July 15, 2021. (Image posted by Euphrates Post)
  • Image of Riad Ali Al-Khuzam, from the village of Al-Maray’iyah, who was killed in a raid near the Al Qa’em Syrian-Iraqi border on July 15, 2021. (Image posted by Euphrates Post)

Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Assessment:

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

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attackers
    Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1959

Incident date

June 28, 2021

Location

القائم, Al Qa’em, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Airwars assessment

One child was reportedly killed and three other civilians, including women and children, were wounded in US airstrikes on the Al Qa’em area near the Syrian-Iraqi borders on June 28, 2021. Local sources also reported that between four and 11 militants, with at least four members of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization, were also killed. The US Department of Defense confirmed they carried out the airstrikes but only recognized killing militants.

Syrian Arab News Agency reported that the airstrikes attacked “residential houses near the Syrian-Iraqi borders in the countryside of al-Bokmal” led to “the martyrdom of a child, the injury of 3 civilians, and material damage”. Sputnik News also pointed to local sources that reported that “a child was killed and 3 other civilians were wounded” and that “the source denied that the target site was a military one, pointing out that the warehouses contain large quantities of oil derivatives, stressing that the fires affected vehicles that were in the target area”.

Eye of Euphrates provided information on both civilian and belligerent casualties, reporting that “the initial statistic that was reached indicates the killing of about 10 members of the Sayyid al-Shuhada militia (4 of them were recognized by the militia), amid reports of a civilian death and wounding of others, including women and children, with varying injuries, after which they were transferred to the city of Deir Ezzor”. According to them, the civilian casualties were caused by “Iranian militias hiding among civilians and taking their headquarters and warehouses within residential areas”.

The US Department of Defense released a statement that “the targets were selected because these facilities are utilized by Iran-backed militias that are engaged in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) attacks against U.S. personnel and facilities in Iraq. Specifically, the U.S. strikes targeted operational and weapons storage facilities at two locations in Syria and one location in Iraq, both of which lie close to the border between those countries. Several Iran-backed militia groups, including Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH) and Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (KSS), used these facilities.”

Various sources reported on militants that were killed in the strikes. According to Euphrates Post, “Iraqi Popular Mobilization Militia mourns four of its fighters who were killed as a result of the American air strikes” and included an image of the four that were killed. @DeirEzzorNow also named four Popular Mobilization members killed as “Karar Abdel Aziz, Hussein Ali Abdul Hussein, Karar Saad Hamdan, Mohamed Al-Fartousi” and later provided an elevated death toll of 11.

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights provided a death toll of seven Iraqi Popular Mobilization” militia members in addition to “destruction of an ammunition and weapons depot, in addition to the destruction of another military point for the militias.” Step News gave their own toll of “6 militants were killed and about 12 others were wounded”.

A tweet from @YusufAd76532779 identified that “the house that was targeted by the American aircraft last night near the city of #Albukamal and the Syrian-Iraqi border, which was used by the militias of the “Sayyid Al-Shuhada” as their headquarters, has become completely destroyed and all of the militia members were killed in it”.

Geolocation for the incident was provided by @obretix, @AuroraIntel and @SAMSyria0.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • 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.
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4–11
  • Belligerents reported injured
    12

Sources (27) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (30) [ collapse]

  • Image of the alleged members of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Militia killed in US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Euphrates Post)
  • Explosions and smoke caused by the US airstrikes near Al-Bukamal, east of Deir Ezzor, on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Euphrates Eye)
  • Explosions and smoke caused by the US airstrikes near Al-Bukamal, east of Deir Ezzor, on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Euphrates Eye)
  • Geolocation of the US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border on June 28, 2021 done by @obretix.
  • Geolocation of the US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border on June 28, 2021 done by @obretix.
  • Image of the alleged members of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Militia killed in US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • According to @SAMSyria0, "one of the American raids targeted a site (the yellow circle) near the site that was targeted in previous raids (the red circle), and the two sites are located on the Syrian-Iraqi border near the crossing Qaim."
  • Images of the "American strikes on the free zone in Al-Bukamal, Syria (on the border with Iraq) targeting sites" (Image posted by @mas2oul1)
  • Images of the "American strikes on the free zone in Al-Bukamal, Syria (on the border with Iraq) targeting sites" (Image posted by @mas2oul1)
  • Images of the "American strikes on the free zone in Al-Bukamal, Syria (on the border with Iraq) targeting sites" (Image posted by @mas2oul1)
  • The before image of a home that allegedly belonged to militias of the "Sayyid Al-Shuhada" as their headquarters and was destroyed by US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border. (Image posted by @YusufAd76532779)
  • The after image of a home that allegedly belonged to militias of the "Sayyid Al-Shuhada" as their headquarters and was destroyed by US airstrikes on the Syrian-Iraqi border. (Image posted by @YusufAd76532779)
  • One of the headquarters of the "Sayyid al-Shuhada" militia, which was destroyed by US warplanes, in the countryside of Al-Bukamal. #Nahr_media
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Geolocation of one of the strikes using video footage with coordinates provided. (Images posted by @AuroraIntel)
  • Damage to the Iranian militia headquarters in Al-Hari caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Damage caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Damage caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Damage to a Civilian house caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Damage to the Afghan headquarters in Al-Hari caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Damage to the Iranian forces in Al-Hari crossing caused by the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • Area near the US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)
  • A crane belonging to the Revolutionary Guard heads to the sites of the raids to remove the rubble and retrieve the bodies following US airstrikes on the border areas of Al-Bukamal countryside on June 28, 2021. (Image posted by Eye of Euphrates via Facebook)

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

"At President Biden's direction, U.S. military forces earlier this evening conducted defensive precision airstrikes against facilities used by Iran-backed militia groups in the Iraq-Syria border region. The targets were selected because these facilities are utilized by Iran-backed militias that are engaged in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) attacks against U.S. personnel and facilities in Iraq. Specifically, the U.S. strikes targeted operational and weapons storage facilities at two locations in Syria and one location in Iraq, both of which lie close to the border between those countries. Several Iran-backed militia groups, including Kata'ib Hezbollah (KH) and Kata'ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (KSS), used these facilities.

As demonstrated by this evening's strikes, President Biden has been clear that he will act to protect U.S. personnel. Given the ongoing series of attacks by Iran-backed groups targeting U.S. interests in Iraq, the President directed further military action to disrupt and deter such attacks. We are in Iraq at the invitation of the Government of Iraq for the sole purpose of assisting the Iraqi Security Forces in their efforts to defeat ISIS. The United States took necessary, appropriate, and deliberate action designed to limit the risk of escalation - but also to send a clear and unambiguous deterrent message.

As a matter of international law, the United States acted pursuant to its right of self-defense. The strikes were both necessary to address the threat and appropriately limited in scope. As a matter of domestic law, the President took this action pursuant to his Article II authority to protect U.S. personnel in Iraq."

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • 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.
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4–11
  • Belligerents reported injured
    12

Sources (27) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1958

Incident date

May 4, 2021

Location

الشنان, Al Shanan, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Geolocation

34.976104, 40.576696 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

At least one man was killed in an alleged US-led Coalition drone strike in al-Shanan village in eastern Deir Ezzor on May 4, 2021. While the majority of sources that reported on the incident claimed that the man killed was no longer part of any armed groups, a spokesman for the Coalition identified him as an ISIS operative.

According to Deir Ezzor 24 Network’s correspondent, “a person was killed when a drone believed to belong to the international coalition targeted his car in al-Shanan” and “the targeted car belonged to a former Free Army fighter who worked before his death as a gas official of the Syrian Democratic Forces.”

Euphrates Post identified the man killed as Bassem Atwan Al-Bilal and pointed out that his car was struck “near the Al-Balhawi Mosque in the village of Shannan.” They added that following the strike, “the Qasd imposed a cordon on the town”.

A spokesperson for the Coalition tweeted “.@CJTFOIR conducted an air strike removing a Daesh terrorist from the battlefield near Dayr az Zawr, Syria today. @Coalition and our partners will continue our mission to #defeatdaesh, disrupt their resources and eliminate Daesh remnants.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights identified the man killed as being a civilian and Jesr Press reported that “at the present time he does not belong to any military organization, and he is married and has 8 children and two wives.” More details were given by Watan FM that the man killed “has defected from the Assad forces since 2012, and has not yet joined any military faction, and he is currently working as a gas delegate to the Autonomous Administration, and he has 4 brothers who volunteer with the Syrian Democratic Forces, one of whom is a leader called (Rayan Al-Shanan)”.

Eye of Euphrates reported that Al-Atwan was killed “while he was going to work in the harragas in Al-Hawi area near the oil burners” and spoke with a relative of the young man, who reiterated that “Al-Atwan has nothing to do with military matters, and that he works in the field of refining oil through primitive burners.”

Baladi News pointed out that “it is likely that the car he was traveling in was previously monitored, knowing that Al-Atwan bought it recently” which could explain why he was hit.

However, the North Press Agency Syria reported that the man was “said to be affiliated with the Islamic State” and added that he was killed after leaving a mosque.

The airstrike was carried out by an MQ-9 Reaper drone, according to @N0tWoofers. All of the sources that reported on the strike attributed it to Coalition drones or did not identify who was responsible, in addition to the Coalition spokesman verifying that its forces had carried out a strike in the area.

The incident occured in the evening.

  • Bassem Atwan Al-Bilal 30 years old male Status as non combatant disputed by some sources killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–1

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (5) [ collapse]

  • On Tuesday, May 4, a person was killed when a drone, believed to belong to the international coalition, targeted his car in al-Shanan village in the easter Deir Ezzor countryside, according to Deir Ezzor 24 network correspondent. (Images posted by @DeirEzzor24)
  • On Tuesday, May 4, a person was killed when a drone, believed to belong to the international coalition, targeted his car in al-Shanan village in the easter Deir Ezzor countryside, according to Deir Ezzor 24 network correspondent. (Images posted by @DeirEzzor24)
  • Destruction caused by "by an unidentified drone that targeted his car near the Al-Balhawi Mosque in the village of Shannan." (Image posted by Euphrates Post via Facebook)
  • Caption translation: A picture of the young man, Bassem Atwan Al-Bilal, who was killed this evening in an air strike by an unidentified drone that targeted his car near the Al-Balhawi Mosque in the village of Shannan. (Image posted by Euphrates Post via Facebook)
  • Caption translation: It is worth noting that “Al-Atwan” was a former commander of the Free Army Brigades in the “Jund al-Rahman” Brigade and is currently working as a delegate for the gas supported by the SDF. Meanwhile, the spokesman for the International Coalition Forces announced on Twitter: that an air strike had been launched near Deir Ezzor to remove an ISIS operative from the battle. (Image posted by Euphrates Post)

Geolocation notes (3) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the village of Al Shanan (الشنان). Analyzing visual material from sources, we have narrowed down the location to these exact coordinates: 34.976104, 40.576696.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the village of Al Shanan (الشنان).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

  • Tagged satellite imagery according to sources.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

  • Tagged visual material from sources.

    Imagery:
    Eye of Euphrates

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

.@CJTFOIR conducted an air strike removing a Daesh terrorist from the battlefield near Dayr az Zawr, Syria today.
@Coalition and our partners will continue our mission to #defeatdaesh, disrupt their resources and eliminate Daesh remnants.

- From @OIRSpox

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–1

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1957

Incident date

April 4, 2021

Location

مبروكة‎, Mabrouka countryside, Al Hassaka, Syria

Geolocation

36.665778, 39.858190 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

At least one named man, whose status as a civilian or belligerent presently remains contested, was killed and a civilian was injured in alleged Coalition airstrikes (or possibly an IED attack) near the city of Ras Al-Ain in the Al Hassaka countryside on April 4th 2021. The UK declared a Reaper drone strike in the near region for that date.

Free Hasska Reporter described and included pictures of what it said was a Kia vehicle, after having been reportedly struck with “three missiles” and named the person killed as Omar Abdel-Fattah. Adar Press indicated that he may have been using another name and ” it was not able to know his real name, but he bears an identity issued by the local council of the city of Ras al-Ain.”

Instead according to Ezdina, “a civilian lost his life and another was wounded, as a result of the explosion of an explosive device, today, Sunday, in the countryside of Sere Kaniye / Ras Al-Ain.” It  also reported that “the explosive device, which was planted in a civilian vehicle, exploded.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that ” the dead man was a civilian, not belonging to any armed faction, and he was from the region and belonged to the Adwan clan, which is why it is likely that his death was a result of clan and family disputes.”

Ida2at also identified the man killed as a civilian, stating that he died from “the explosion of a truck transporting petroleum products…as a result of a technical failure that led to the ignition of the refined fuel.” They also added that the road that the incident occurred on was “used by armed factions loyal to the “Turkish occupation”, to allegedly facilitate smuggling operations with Syrian Democratic Forces.

Syrian TV also identified both the man killed and wounded as being civilians, though harmed by an explosive device planted in the car, adding that they had “crossed illegally” coming from areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in the countryside of Hasaka.”

Euphrates Post quoted local sources as saying “a “Kia 2700” vehicle exploded on Darbasiyah Road before entering Ras Al-Ain, killing the driver, whom it described as a member of the “National Army”, and also wounding a civilian.”

A tweet by the Violations Documentation Centre identified the man killed as being an “ISIS leader” and attributed the strike to “a drone, believed to be by the international coalition to fight ISIS led by the United States.” Rojava Network also noted what it said was the “killing of the leader of the terrorist organization ISIS, Omar Abdel Fattah, in a raid by an international coalition drone”.

Xeber 24 instead reported that “sources suggested that the targeted person was affiliated with the armed factions and organizations supported by Turkey, as the Ankara loyalists struck a large security cordon at the location of the targeting.”

According to NPA Syrian, “this [would be] the first time that the Global Coalition has targeted ISIS or al-Qaeda leaders in this region.”

The British Royal Air Force issued a statement on April 8th that “In a separate operation carried on Sunday 4 April, an RAF Reaper, armed with Hellfire missiles, identified a small group of Daesh terrorists in northern Syria, some fifty miles west of Al Hasakah. Having checked that there were no civilians nearby, the Reaper’s crew attacked the terrorists, striking the target successfully.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Omar Abdel-Fattah Adult male Contested as to whether belligerent or civilian killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Ground operation
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    British Armed Forces
  • Suspected targets
    ISIS, Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–1

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • Caption translation: Unidentified aircraft targeted a Kia vehicle with three missiles near Al-Sarli village, killing a person named Omar Abdel-Fattah (Images posted by Free Hasska reporter via Facebook)
  • Caption translation: Unidentified aircraft targeted a Kia vehicle with three missiles near Al-Sarli village, killing a person named Omar Abdel-Fattah (Images posted by Free Hasska reporter via Facebook)
  • Caption translation: Unidentified aircraft targeted a Kia vehicle with three missiles near Al-Sarli village, killing a person named Omar Abdel-Fattah (Images posted by Free Hasska reporter via Facebook)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An image of Omar Abdel Fattah, contested as to whether he was a civilian or belligerent, killed in strikes against Ras al-Ain on April 4, 2021. (Image posted by Roja Ava network via Facebook)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the vicinity of Mabrouka (مبروكة‎). According to research conducted by @obretix, a possible location for this strike is: 36.665778, 39.858190. However, due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

British Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    British Armed Forces
  • British Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

British Armed Forces

In a separate operation carried on Sunday 4 April, an RAF Reaper, armed with Hellfire missiles, identified a small group of Daesh terrorists in northern Syria, some fifty miles west of Al Hasakah. Having checked that there were no civilians nearby, the Reaper’s crew attacked the terrorists, striking the target successfully.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Ground operation
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    British Armed Forces
  • Suspected targets
    ISIS, Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–1

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1956

Incident date

February 25, 2021

Location

حارم, Harem, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

36.213082, 36.519177 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Some local sources which reported the sounds of an explosion from an alleged US-led coalition drone strike in Harem, Idlib said that three ‘people’ were injured as a result of that on February 25th, 2021.

While most sources didn’t specify identities of those injured, @AlnahdaNews_24 said they were militants. “An unknown drone struck a point in the town of Harem in the northern countryside of Idlib, wounding three militants.”

Shaam Network and @NagiNajjar reported that three ‘people’ were wounded when a drone struck them in Harem, Idlib on Feb 25th.

Though Shaam Network didn’t blame any belligerent, @NagiNajjar attributed the attack to the US-led Coalition saying: “News of the cause of the explosion in the city of Harem is the targeting of a person by the international coalition, but his identity is not known yet.”

@AmmarAlzeer tweeted that “The International Coalition aviation launches several air strikes near the Harem area in the northern countryside of Idlib.”

However, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the cause of the explosion is not known. They said that the explosion coincided with the presence of Coalition drone in the air, but it is unclear whether it is a Coalition strike or the detonation of a mine cave during the search for antiquities in the area.

Also Aram reported both stories. It said that an area of the military factions in Harem was hit by an explosion, either by a US-led coalition bombing, or by the explosion of mines during a search for antiquities in the area. “A video recording of the targeted site, showed that the target area was mountainous and contained rocks, and the bombing led to digging a hole in the place. The spokesman indicated in the recording that they did not know what the exact target was (a missile – a raid – an explosion) and explained that it did not lead to any damage.”

Local activists told Aram network that the explosion caused three casualties, which were transported to Harem Hospital, and most likely the result of an airstrike carried out by an International Coalition warplane on a point of the “Guardians of Religion Organization” faction in the Kfarmou region of Harem district.

They indicated that the aircraft belonging to the international coalition flew over the sky of the city of Idlib, the city of Salqin, and the city of Harem, on the border with Turkey, after the aforementioned targeting. Meanwhile, “Idlib Governorate Radio” denied on its Facebook page the news of the coalition raid in the vicinity of Harem, explaining that the explosion was caused by landmines that were detonated to search for antiquities by unknown persons.

No further information is available at the moment.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    Unknown
  • Belligerents reported injured
    3

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • The surrounding of Harem.
  • Caption translation: An unknown explosion in Harem in the Idlib countryside is believed to have been caused by an airstrike carried out by the International Coalition.
  • Image of a cave that some local sources said was detonated in Harem on February 25th in search of some antiquities. (image via Aramme).

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Harem (حارم), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.213082, 36.519177. 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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    Unknown
  • Belligerents reported injured
    3

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1955

Incident date

January 9, 2021

Location

العزبة, Al Azbat, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Geolocation

35.321848, 40.307980 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A 7-year-old child was killed and his mother and brother were injured when an alleged US-led Coalition mortar shell hit the family’s home in the town of Al Azbat, Deir Ezzor governorate, on January 9th, 2021. Local sources reported that the incident occured during a military training near the Coalition base near the Koniko oil field.

According to a Euphrates Post correspondent, “a mortar shell landed in a house in the vicinity of the Koniko oil field base, east of Deir Ezzor, during training of the American forces.” The source added that the “the shell landed in the house of the civilian Hani Hussein Al Toukan, killing his son Ahed and seriously injuring his wife and other son, Fahed.” The US forces reportedly brought the victims to a nearby medical point.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights wrote that “a child was killed and his mother was injured, as a result of an unknown explosion near their house in the Azbat area north of Deir Ezzor city, Koniku Oil, where the International Coalition forces and the SDF conduct joint military exercises.”

Several other sources wrote that the civilian house was targeted. @SyriawatanNews, for example, tweeted that “the ‘American occupation’ forces present in the Koniko oil field targeted the town of Ezbet in the northern countryside of Deir Ezzor with mortar shells, killing a child and wounding others.”

@SalamaAlhussein tweeted that it was not the village of Al Azbat that was hit, but the village of Khasham. All other sources mentioned Al Azbat village.

In a civilian casualty assessment released April 16th 2021, the Coalition classed this event as ‘non credible’, claiming that ” 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.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (3)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • 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
  • Suspected targets
    Other, Unknown

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Translation: “The child Ahed Hani Al Toukan was killed and all his family members were injured when a mortar shell fell on his home in the village of Khasham, east of Deir Ezzor, from the Coalition forces stationed in the Koniko field, where a patrol of the American forces brought the child and his mother to the hospital” (via @SalamaAlhussein).
  • The boy Ahed Hani Al Toukan was killed when his home was hit by an alleged US-led Coalition mortar shell in Al Azbat on January 9th, 2021 (via @SalamaAlhussein).

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Al Azbat (العزبة) area, south of the Conoco Oil Refinery, for which the generic coordinates are: 35.321848, 40.307980. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

  • Reports of the incident mention the Al Azbat (العزبة) area, south of the Conoco Oil Refinery.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

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
    in al Azbat, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFV188095
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Apr 16, 2021
  • Jan. 9, 2021, in al Azbat, 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. 3293/CS1955 37SFV188095

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 child)
  • 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
  • Suspected targets
    Other, Unknown

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1954

Incident date

December 30, 2020

Location

الطريق الواصل بين سلقين و بلدة اسقاط, The road between Salqin and Isqat, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

36.142999, 36.464729 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Street level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Street

Airwars assessment

Two local sources reported that a civilian was wounded in an alleged US-led Coalition drone strike on a vehicle on the road between the city of Salqin and the town of Isqat in Idlib countryside on December 30th. Two other sources stated that there had been no reports of casualties.

The Syrian Civil Defence reported: “A person was wounded, this afternoon, Wednesday, December 30th, as a result of unidentified aircraft targeting a car on the road between the city of Salqin and the town of Isqat in the northwestern countryside of Idlib.” Shaam News wrote: “A man was wounded when an unidentified aircraft targeted a vehicle on the road between Salqin city and the town of Isqat.”

@IdlibPlus tweeted that the drone belonged to the US-led Coalition, but wrote that there were no casualties. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported that there had been no casualties reported thus far in an alleged US-led Coalition drone strike. Hence, the civilian harm status for this incident is graded as contested.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Vehicle reportedly targeted by alleged US-led Coalition drones on the road between Salqin and Isqat, Idlib, on December 30th, 2020 (via Syrian Civil Defence).
  • Syrian Civil Defence volunteers at the site after alleged US-led Coalition drones on a vehicle on the road between Salqin and Isqat, Idlib, on December 30th, 2020 (via Syrian Civil Defence).

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck on the road connecting the city of Salqin (سلقين) to the town of Isqat (إسقاط). Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for a middle point on this road are: 36.142999, 36.464729.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck on the road connecting the city of Salqin (سلقين) to the town of Isqat (إسقاط).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (4) [ collapse]