Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Belligerent
Country
start date
end date
Airwars Grading
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CI550

Incident date

March 17, 2017

Location

الموصل الجديدة, Mosul, Mosul al Jadida / New Mosul, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.33256, 43.1059 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

In the highest confirmed civilian casualty event of the war against ISIL, at least 105 and as many as 141 non-combatants were later confirmed by the Coalition as having been killed in a US airstrike on a house in West Mosul’s al Jadida area. At least 137 bodies were reportedly recovered from the scene.

Locals have claimed that as many as 230 or even 520 civilians were killed in the catastrophic event at al Jadida – though these higher numbers may conflate a series of events over a number of days of violence in the neighbourhood.

The Coalition later confirmed it had carried out a strike “in the vicinity of alleged civilian casualties” and launched an investigation. This eventually concluded that a US bomb had killed between 105 and 141 civilians – though the Coalition also claimed that ISIL explosives had contributed to the disaster.

The Iraqi military initially placed the death toll at 61 killed – and blamed ISIL. This was at odds with Iraqi civil defence on the scene, who reported at least 137 bodies at first and said the incident was caused by an airstrike.

It was reported that a house near Al Rahma Al Ahli Hospital was bombed in which hundreds of displaced people were hosted, providing them food and shelter as well as a cellar to provide protection from airstrikes. However there were also claims that ISIL had deliberately trapped people in the building.

There was some initial reporting confusion about the date of the incident, which was placed variously between March 17th-20th. It is possible that a number of additional strikes in the near vicinity over some days may also have caused casualties.

Both the Coalition and Iraq had announced investigations into whether they had conducted an airstrike which may have ‘indvertently’ ignited a fuel truck and perhaps a VBIED at the scene.

Correspondences Team identified the house as the 3-storey building of Haj Tawfik house. Abdulrahman Al Lawzi reported on Facebook that the Coalition hit the house in New Mosul and that all the people in it had died. 56 male bodies had been found, but “rescue efforts were unable to reach the lower hall where the bodies of women and children are buried”. In total, 126 people were reported killed, as well as 8 in the house next door. Later, Waradana news said that about 150 bodies were still under the rubble. Mosul Insta, a local Facebook group, reported as many as 250 dead:

“More than 250 human beings lost their lives in vain. Children, women, elderly and disabled only in the new Mosul area. The list of victims goes on and on and the war rages and burns everything and I do not see it ending soon. The people of Mosul do not have their parents”.

Al Jazeera posted a graphic video reporting the strikes, speaking of 137 bodies, mostly women and children.

Iraqi Vice-President Osama al-Nujaifi called for an immediate halt to the bombing of western Mosul neighborhoods. “The intensity of the fighting against the terrorist is not exempting officials and leaders from moral and humanitarian responsibility for the increase in the number of innocent civilian casualties who have been forced to remain in their areas by the terrorist organization,” he said.

In a filmed visit to the scene on March 24th, the head of the Iraq Provincial Council Basma Basim said that she feared as many as 500 locals had in fact died at al Jadida. The Iraqi Observatory also claimed that 500 bodies had so far been recovered. Local MP Ali al-Metwati claimed 600 had died – and that the authorities were covering up the deaths. These high allegations may relate to overall civilian fatalities in the neighbourhood.

On March 26th, Alaraby news reported that “the number of people killed in the US air raid on the new Mosul district on the western coast of the city rose to 511, including 187 children under the age of 15, Iraqi officials said.”

A day later, on March 27th, Al Araby put the death toll at 520. On March 31st, it raised it to 531.

Both the United Nations and Amnesty International subsequently released information on the attack. The Amnesty report contained the following account: “As the fighting intensified Wa’ad Ahmad al-Tai, his brother Mahmoud and their families sought shelter at their other brother’s two-storey home hoping it would offer them more protection. “We were all huddled in one room at the back of the house, 18 of us, three families. But when the house next door was bombed, it collapsed on us, precisely over the room we were sheltering in. My son Yusef, nine, and my daughter Shahad, three, were killed, together with my brother Mahmoud, his wife Manaya and their nine-year-old son Aws, and my niece Hanan. She was cradling her five-month-old daughter, who survived, thank God,” he said.”

A relative of the family said the following in a video by Al Jazeera:

“My family were in three houses, 26 persons, I was always in touch with them before the bombardment. On Thursday morning, my brother sent me a message which reads “ Wafa’a, we cannot call due to the heavy bombardment” my heart was feeling like I am not going to see my family again. Their neighbor, Saker, was the only one who survived (…)”

In July 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Hisham Hazem Age unknown male From the Sheikh family killed
  • Issam Hazem Age unknown male From the Sheikh family killed

Family members (2)

  • Firas Child male Child of Ali Sarhan Al Hayali - possibly killed in separate event killed
  • Taiba Child female Child of Ali Sarhan Al Hayali - possibly killed in separate event killed

Family members (4)

  • Ali Thamer Abdulla Adult male Twin brother of Rakan Thamer Abdulla killed
  • Rakan Thamer Abdulla Adult male Twin brother of Ali Thamer Abdulla killed
  • Haj Thamer Abdulla Adult male Father killed
  • 23 additional family members reported killed

Family members (1)

  • The family of the wife of Karim Jassim Al Salim Unknown number of victims

Family members (1)

  • Yarub Khader Kadawi Adult male One of 12 family members reported killed killed

Family members (1)

  • Basem al-Muhzam’s family 11 persons reported killed killed

Family members (1)

  • The Sinjari family Age unknown 30 persons reported killed killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    105 – 141
  • (22 children5 women4 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    6
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (83) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (12) [ collapse]

  • Firas and Taiba died on March 20th in New Mosul (via Mosul is Here Facebook group)
  • These twin brothers were allegedly killed when a Coalition airstrike hit their home on March 17th/18th in Al Jadida, Mosul (via Captain Farqad and Egypt Gym, Facebook)
  • Another picture of the twin brothers
  • More picture of the brothers
  • Body bags being buried after the incident
  • An unnamed girl supposedly killed in the strike (via Adna Khalil)
  • Yarub Khader Kadawi (via Maram Al Alhanin)
  • Two more unnamed victims allegedly killed in the strike (via Mohammed Kareem)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A man allegedly found under rubble four days after the attack (via Women of Mosul)
  • Aftermath of the strike (via LA Times)
  • Body bags being carried away after the strike (via LA Times)
  • UN statement on the incident

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 36.3323266, 43.1050515

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
    Killed by secondary explosion(s), Killed in adjacent structure
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    105–141
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF300225
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • May 25, 2017
  • Jun 2, 2017
  • During a strike on ISIS snipers firing on partnered forces, 101 civilians were unintentionally killed when the munition struck the building igniting ISIS- planted explosives that destroyed the structure and killed an additional four civilians in an adjacent structure.

  • CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED May 25, 2017 Release # 20170525-02 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CJTF-OIR Completes Airstrike Investigation SOUTHWEST ASIA - A Combined Joint Task Force - Operation Inherent Resolve investigation of a March 17 Coalition airstrike in the Al Jadidah district of Mosul, Iraq, found that a secondary explosion triggered a rapid failure of the structure, in which two ISIS snipers, 101 civilians sheltered in the bottom floors of the structure, and four civilians in a neighboring structure were killed. An additional 36 civilians who were reported to be connected to the structure remain unaccounted for. The investigation determined that ISIS emplaced a large amount of explosive material in a structure containing a significant number of civilians and then attacked Iraqi forces from the structure. Around 8 a.m. on March 17, 2017, Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against two ISIS snipers engaging Iraqi Counterterrorism Service soldiers at the request of the local Commander. Neither Coalition nor Iraqi forces knew that civilians were sheltered within the structure. The Coalition selected a single GBU-38 precision-guided munition as the most appropriate and proportionate means of engagement to neutralize the threat and to minimize collateral damage. The GBU-38's detonation, localized to the top floor of the structure, ignited a large amount of explosive material which, unknown to the Coalition, ISIS fighters had previously placed in the house. Post-blast analysis detected residues common to explosives used by ISIS, but not consistent with the explosive content of a GBU-38 munition. Furthermore, weapons and structural experts concluded, based on extensive modeling, the structural damage to the building was in a different location, and was in excess of what could have been caused by a single GBU-38 munition. "Our condolences go out to all those that were affected," said Maj. Gen. Joe Martin, Commanding General CJFLCC-OIR. "The Coalition takes every feasible measure to protect civilians from harm. The best way to protect civilians is to defeat ISIS."

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For March 17th-18th the Coalition reported: “Near Mosul, four strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units; destroyed 56 ISIS vehicles, 25 fighting positions, five rocket-propelled grenade systems, two medium machine guns, two mortar systems, and an ISIS VBIED; and suppressed 20 ISIS mortar teams and four ISIS tactical units.”

Media
from belligerent (3) [ collapse]

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    105 – 141
  • (22 children5 women4 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    6
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (83) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI070

Incident date

June 3, 2015

Location

الحويجة, Hawijah, industrial district, Kirkuk, Iraq

Geolocation

35.323474, 43.78453 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A Coalition airstrike on an Islamic State depot levelled a significant number of buildings, and at least 70 civilians and a large number of militants were reportedly killed. A large supply of TNT explosive detonated after the IED-making facility was struck. Bas News described the attack as one of the worst mass casualty incidents in Iraq since the 2003 invasion.

Following the publication of a major investigation by Dutch media NOS and NRC in October 2019, which claimed that the Netherlands had been responsible for the incident, the Dutch Ministry of Defence finally took public responsibility for the airstrike on November 4th, 2019.

The head of Kirkuk’s Arab Council, Mohammed Khalil al-Jubouri, at the time placed the number of dead and injured civilians at 150. The Iraqi Revolution site claimed that 70 civilians had died, with more than 100 injured. Rudaw also reported 70 killed, describing 26 children and 22 women among the dead.

Local sheikh Abdallah al-Jubouri told Al-Araby news agency at the time that “several international coalition airstrikes hit the district. The losses were made worse by there being no ambulances or other means to rescue victims.” He added that “This is the single worse airstrike that has targeted civilians in al-Hawija; eight months ago we were getting hit by Iraqi army warplanes but that has stopped. The international coalition has committed a civilian massacre today and Islamic State and its weapons are the reason.“

Eyewitness Hassan Mahmoud al-Jubbouri told Reuters that the area looked as if it had been hit by a nuclear bomb, and described pulling the bodies of a family of six from the rubble. Only one victim has so far been named – Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi – described as the owner of a car maintenance shop in the district.

Bizarrely, in the immediate wake of the strike, a Coalition official told Reuters: “Since we started airstrikes in August last year in Iraq, I have difficulty thinking of any civilian casualties in Iraq, and for thousands of sorties that is good. One is clearly too many.“

Among as many as 100 militants also reported killed was Islamic State’s local police chief, named as Jassim Shukur. “The [Coalition] warplanes also bombarded two other sub-districts around Hawija and many other ISIS militants who were with the police chief were killed by the bombardment,” Iraqi official Sarhad Qadir told Rudaw.

In a later January 2016 report, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) noted that US officials had confirmed carrying out the Hawijah attack though went on to state: “Pictures and videos have emerged in media and online showing an area purporting to be the blast site that has been almost completely flattened. UNAMI/OHCHR was not able to verify the authenticity of the photos or the videos, nor the number of civilian casualties.”

In October 2019, Dutch media NOS and NRC published a major investigation in which they alleged that Dutch F-16s had carried out the attack. This also revealed that chief Coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan had confirmed to reporters in December 2018 that at least 70 civilians had in fact died – though this had not been officially reported out by the CJTF civilian casualty cell. This statement was later withdrawn by the Coalition on December 5th 2019, asserting that they were no longer able to determine the exact amount of civilian casualties in the incident.

However, past and present officials did confirm to NRC that 70 civilian deaths had been privately counted for Hawijah by the Coalition for at least 18 months – suggesting that the Dutch government may have pressured the Coalition to withdraw its initial estimate.

On November 4th 2019, the Dutch Ministry of Defence took public responsibility for the airstrike. This stirred a public and parliamentary debate in the Netherlands on transparency and accountability regarding civilian casualties as a result of Dutch airstrikes. As a result, Dutch Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld promised significant transparency improvements and said she was looking into possibilities for voluntary compensation for victims.

On November 28th 2019, Dutch newspaper NRC wrote that according to locals, the estimate of 70 civilian deaths was an absolute minimum number. Civilians stated that “almost everyone in Hawijah lost neighbours or family members [in the incident]”.

NRC stated that the Dutch Socialist Party, after seeking contact with the Iraqi Communist Party (ICP), had local Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud collect the names of victims. With volunteers, Abu Louis went from house to house in the affected areas to find eyewitnesses of the event in 2015. According to Abu Louis, there were “62 people killed, including 36 children and 13 women, 822 wounded, 70 destroyed houses, 375 cars total loss”. 405 of the injured were registered in the hospital. The other 417 did not have any permanent injuries.

Abu Louis’ own nephew Homan (15 years old) was killed after debris hit him in the stomach.

On December 3rd, 2019, the Dutch parliament passed a motion which called on the government “to make every effort, where possible in cooperation with NGOs, UN and local authorities, to conduct further investigations on civilian victims as a result of Dutch actions in Hawija”.

In February 2020, the Dutch Ministry of Defence released previously classified documents about the airstrike, including Defensie’s own investigation after several FOIA requests by both Airwars and Dutch media. The documents revealed that the Dutch red cardholder, the military official with a potential veto over airstrikes, was aware before the strike that the risk to civilians could be created than that the Collateral Damage Estimate (CDE) indicated.

Related documents to the case by the Public’s Prosecutors office (OM) were also released, revealing that the OM’s investigation into Hawijah only started nine months after the event and that it was not until 15 months later that the pilots were heard for the first time.

In March 2020, Airwars reported, based on information provided by a senior (non-Dutch) military official, that at least one other Coalition country had refused to conduct the Hawijah strike, implying that the potential risk to civilians was expected to be too high.

A month later, the US government released its investigation into the airstrike after a judicial procedure following an unanswered FOIA request by NRC and NOS. The documents revealed that US officials were aware that the 2015 Dutch airstrike on Hawijah posed a threat to civilians. Four CIA informants had warned the Coalition about civilians living near the ISIS IED factory, as reported by NOS. Furthermore, the Coalition amended its targeting development process. In the future, the Coalition would have to do further in-depth investigation into possible secondary explosions in densely populated areas.

On April 29th, 2020, human rights lawyer Liesbeth Zegveld filed a claim in name of 47 Iraqi’s with the Dutch Ministry of Defence. Some of her clients were severely injured in the airstrike and/or suffered material losses, others lost their relatives. Among her clients are the relatives of Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin, who was working as a security guard in a car showroom on an industrial estate, a 100 metres from the ISIS IED factory, during the night of June 2nd to June 3rd. A few days after the airstrike, Moeshin died of his injuries.

On May 14th, 2020, a fourth Dutch parliamentary debate on the case took place. The Dutch Red Card Holder had not received information about the CIA warnings and the American doubts on the risks for civilians before giving a green light to the airstrike. During the debate, Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld stated that there should be better arrangements on information sharing between the Coalition and the Netherlands.

The incident occured after midnight.

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi Adult male Owner of the car maintenance shop in the area killed
  • Sa’diya Ramadan Jadou 19 years old female wife of Ali Assem Ahmad, died after being hit in the neck by glass of a window that exploded in the incident killed
  • Abdulmalek Qader 5 years old male son of Alaa Qader, blinded by one eye injured
  • Wife of Alaa Qader Adult female first name unknown, injury in back injured
  • Homan 15 years old male nephew of Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud, hit in the stomach by debris killed
  • Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin 24 years old male worked as a night security guard killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (13) [ collapse]

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi (via deleted Facebook page)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An infant allegedly killed in the attack (via Rudaw)
  • The aftermath of the Dutch strike on Hawijah in 2015 which killed an estimated 70 civilians (via Iraqi Revolution).
  • Industrial area of Hawijah, before (above) and after (below) the attack (via NOS).
  • Photo of destruction of Hawijah's industrial area. It is unclear when this photo was taken (via NOS).
  • Footage of Hawijah after the airstrike on June 3th, 2015, published as propaganda by the Islamic State shortly after the incident (via VRT).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • France24 report on the airstrike of May 11th, 2020 (via France24).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Recommendation to update the target development process in a US document released in April 2020 (via NOS).

Geolocation notes (6) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة), Kirkuk province, specifically the “city centre” area and the “industrial district area Bahoijh” (الحي الصناعي بالحويجة). The majority of reports monitored by Airwars state that the incident occurred at night, most likely closely after midnight on Wednesday, June 3rd. There were conflicting reports – on Thursday, June 4th 2015, bas news stated that the incident occurred on “Wednesday evening” (June 3rd, 2015). On June 5th, 2015, alquds quoted a member of the Security Committee in the Kirkuk provincial council, Mohammed Jubouri, as saying a ”French aircraft bombed late on Thursday, a bomb manufacturing plant belonging to the ‘State’ in the district of Hawija.” Reuters reported “in a statement on Wednesday, the Coalition said an airstrike targeted a ‘vehicle-borne improvised explosive device facility’ in Hawija between 8 am on June 2 and 8 am the following day”

  • Industrial district in the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة)

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

  • Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction

    Date taken:
    June 5, 2015

    Resolution:
    30 m

    Imagery:
    © 2018 USGS

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2018

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    November 6, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

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
    Killed by secondary explosion(s)
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    70
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    Hawijah, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLE894093
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

Coalition
  • Dec 11, 2018
  • Via email from CJTFOIR spokesman to NRC: Q. Can someone confirm or deny the CIVCAS from this particular incident from 2015? A. Yes. See the attached Strike Releases. Q. Can you confirm that the Coalition carried out air strikes in the night of 2-3 June 2015 on an alleged IED-production facility in Hawija, Kirkuk, Iraq? A. Yes. See above. 5 June 2015, in a press briefing, LtGen Hesterman said "after a very disciplined targeting process, we dropped a fairly small weapon on a known IED building in an industrial area. The secondary explosion, which was caused from a massive amount of Daesh high explosives, was very large, and it destroyed much of that industrial area.... "Let's be clear. What did the damage was the huge amount of high explosives that Daesh intended to turn into murderous weapons to kill Iraqi forces and innocent civilians. If there're unintended injuries, that responsibility rests squarely on Daesh." https://dod.defense.gov/News/Transcripts/Transcript-View/Article/607056/ Q. Can you confirm that the above mentioned airstrike has led to civilian casualties? A. Yes. Q. What is the number of civilian casualties in the incident, as assessed or estimated by the Coalition? A. The strike to the VBIED factory caused secondary explosions that unfortunately killed 70 civilians despite the precautions the Coalition took to mitigate civilian casualties. Q. What is the outcome of the formal inquiry the Coalition has launched into this incident? A. The investigation found that the strike was in accordance with the Law of Armed Conflict and the applicable Rules of Engagement.

Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • June 2, 2015, in Hawijah, Iraq, via media report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably an unknown number of civilians were unintentionally killed as a result of the strike. Case # 49 Location: 38SLE894093 CJTF-OIR cannot confirm the number of casualties through our assessment process.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS598

Incident date

March 20, 2017

Location

المنصورة, Al Mansoura, Al Badiya school, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.81629, 38.75647 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

In a major casualty incident at least 40 civilians died (and as many as 420 according to some claims) with dozens more injured in an alleged Coalition airstrike on the al Badiya school in Mansoura, which was said to have housed up to 100 displaced families.

Coalition commander Lt General Townsend later denied that the strike had killed civilians, stating prior to the conclusion of the Coalition’s own assessment that: “We had multiple corroborating intelligence sources from various types of intelligence that told us the enemy was using that school. And we observed it. And we saw what we expected to see. We struck it. We saw what we expected to see. Afterwards, we got an allegation that it wasn’t ISIS fighters in there; got a single allegation it wasn’t ISIS fighters in there; it was instead refugees of some sort in the school. Yet, not seeing any corroborating evidence of that. In fact, everything we’ve seen since then suggests that it was the 30 or so ISIS fighters that we expected to be there.”

Local monitors disagreed. In a video Jisr TV said: “Tens of people displaced were in that school and until now we couldn’t reach the school and don’t know what happened to them. Whether they evacuated the school or not is unknown before it was targeted by Coalition warplanes.” Qasioun added that “the Coalition carried out three raids on the school and it’s not clear how many people were killed. The school hosted displaced people from Aleppo.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights – also pointing towards the Coalition – put the death toll at 33, reporting: “One of the activists of the Syrian Observatory witnessed 33 bodies being pulled out of the rubble of the school which was destroyed by the Coalition’s warplanes, before members of the Islamic State came and kept people away. Additionally, two people were pulled out alive…Activists at the Observatory were unable to count the number of children and women among the 33 bodies because they were covered while they were pulled out.” Step news agency said that the number of deaths had risen to “more than 50 following Coalition raids targeting the town at noon today”.

The majority of sources stressed that most of the victims were women and children. Smart News was the only outlet providing specific figures, reporting a death toll of seven children and nine women. Smart went on to say that “according to another local source, the Islamic State organization demanded that civilians in the western and southern parts of al-Raqqa evacuate their schools and medical centers because they were being targeted by the coalition ‘for the possibility of being headquarters of the organization.’”

Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently meanwhile reported that the “the international coalition dropped leaflets on Al Mansoura and the surrounding villages warning residents to leae their homes after 9pm”.

There were some claims of much higher casualties. According to Raqqa Post the death toll may have been as high as 100: “The school hosted more than 50 families from Maskanah, Homs and other places and there are reports, which are not yet confirmed, that over 100 were killed and many more were wounded. Rescue operations are still taking place.” Baladi put the number killed still higher at 200 civilians – “mostly women and children” – with dozens more injured, adding that the school was completely destroyed. Al Natek also put the number killed at 200.

Q_Alenzy said that the school held 300 displaced people, of which 50 men were outside the building at the time of the attack. The source said it hadn’t yet managed to document the total number of deaths, though it reported that three families had died. According to Euphrates Post, the school was hosting even more refugees, up to “500 displaced women and children”.

A report by Syria News Desk did not refer to the al Badiya school specifically, but alleged that there had been “four raids on two schools inhabited by displaced people from eastern Aleppo. Two houses near the school were hit.” Additionally, “the media activist Mohammed Osman, quoting civilian sources from inside Mansoura, told the Syrian News Agency that the search for missing persons was still ongoing, especially as the raids caused the complete collapse of the two buildings, extensive destruction to the surrounding houses and the combustion of cars and motorcycles”.

As more reports came in, the claimed death toll continued to rise, with one local Mansoura group alleging that it had reached 275 – and specifically blaming “American warplanes”. Mansoura in its Peoples’ Eyes claimed an even higher figure: “420 martyrs with people still looking for survivors”.

A subsequent report by Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently said that “the initial death toll for the massacre at Al Badiya school in Al Mansoura committed by the international coalition at dawn yesterday is 183. The bodies are still being pulled out and the number is expected to rise as there was 105 families present at the school.”

In its July 2017 civilian casualty report, the Coalition said it found insufficient evidence that civilians were killed: “March 20, 2017, near Al Mansura, Syria, via social media report: After review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.”

In September 2017, Human Rights Watch published the findings of a major field investigation into the incident. The report said the Coalition attack took place at around 11pm local time at GPS co-ordinates 35.817220, 38.756306 – and had killed at least 40 named civilians. It said the dead included both IDPs and families of ISIS fighters.

Following Human Right Watch’s report, the Coalition re-opened and re-assessed the Al Mansoura school allegation. In late June 2018 it concluded it was responsible for killing 40 civilians: “(2.) March 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria via social media report. The report was reopened after the receipt of new evidence from Human Rights Watch. During a strike on Daesh militant multifunctional center allegedly caused civilian casualties. Forty civilians were unintentionally killed.”

Later on the Coalition provided Airwars with the military grid reference of the strike (37SDV780636), placing it at the al Badiya school in Mansoura.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (1)

  • Khalif Al-Ayto and his entire family Age unknown male killed

Family members (1)

  • Kitan Al’amash and his family Age unknown male killed

Family members (4)

Family members (1)

Family members (1)

  • Mohammed Jum’a Al-Hadid and his family Age unknown male killed

Family members (18)

  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 1 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 2 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 3 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 4 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 5 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 6 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 7 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 8 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 9 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 10 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 11 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 12 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 13 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 14 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 15 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 16 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 17 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed
  • Saleh Mohammad al Jassem family 18 Age unknown displaced from eastern Aleppo killed

Family members (5)

  • Jawhara Jomea al-Kharaz Adult female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Kifae Jomea al-Kharraz Adult female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Haneen Mowaffak Kharaz Child female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Ahmad Mowaffak Kharaz Child female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Malak Mowaffak Kharaz Child female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed

Family members (2)

  • Manaf Hussein al A’thab Adult male named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Wife of Manaf Hussein al A’thab Adult female named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed

Family members (4)

  • Ibrahim al-Ibrahim al-Farhoud 40 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Halima al-Hamdi, wife of Ibrahim Adult female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Isma’il 2 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Ahmed 5 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed

Family members (5)

  • Isma’il al-Ibrahim al-Farhoud, (son of Dahiya) 35 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Ala 7 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Amal 5 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Malak 3 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Adel 2 months years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed

Family members (4)

  • Ahmad al-Farhoud Age unknown male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives), Family of Ahmad al-Farhoud (cousin of Ibrahim and Isma’il) killed
  • Nuha al-Farhoud, wife of Ahmad al-Farhoud Adult female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives), Family of Ahmad al-Farhoud (cousin of Ibrahim and Isma’il) killed
  • Alyan Child female under age of 10, named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives), Family of Ahmad al-Farhoud (cousin of Ibrahim and Isma’il) killed
  • Lana Child female under age of 8, named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives), Family of Ahmad al-Farhoud (cousin of Ibrahim and Isma’il) killed

Family members (7)

  • ‘Idan Ramadan 50 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Zahra, first wife of ‘Idan Adult female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Naser Ramadan, son of ‘Idan and Zahra Child male around 13, named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Mansour Ramadan, son of ‘Idan and Zahra 9 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • ‘Alia, second wife of ‘Idan Adult female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Mohammad, son of ‘Idan and ‘Alia 15 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Kafa’, daughter of ‘Idan and ‘Alia Child female named by HRW, displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives) killed

Family members (3)

  • Maha Khalid al-Salameh 30 years old named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Ali Zuheir al-Khalid 7 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Mohammad Zein Zuhair al-Khalid 5 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed

Family members (6)

  • Muwaffaq Jum’a al-Kharaz 40 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Khitam Khaled Salama al-Du’as 38 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Malak Muwafaq al-Kharaz 8 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Hanin Muwafaq al-Kharaz 5 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Kafa’ Jum’a al-Kharaz 33 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Jawhara Jum’a al-Kharaz 30 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed

Family members (10)

  • Khaled Salama 70 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Muna Mahmoud al-Kubba 57 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Muhammad Khaled Salama 28 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Ahmad Khaled Salama 25 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Asma’ Khaled Salama 22 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Yasmine Khaled Salama 20 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Maha Khaled Salama 18 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Nur Khaled Salama 15 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Munaf Hussein al-‘azab 35 years old male named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Fatima Akram Muhammad al-Eid 33 years old female named by HRW, displaced from the Tadmor (Palmyra) and Sukhna areas (information collected from relatives) killed
  • Khitam Khaled Salama al-Daeas Adult female killed
  • Mohammad Zein Suhair Rabiji Child male named by the Violations Documentation Center as victims from Palmyra killed
  • Dahiya Ramadan Adult displaced from the village of Maskanah (information collected from relatives), around 60, wife of Adel al-Farhoud killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    40 – 420
  • (16 children15 women10 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50–56
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (73) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (19) [ collapse]

  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via Mansoura in its People's Eyes)
  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via Mansoura in its People's Eyes)
  • Ruins of Badiya School, Mansoura, following an alleged Coalition strike, March 21st 2017. (via Mansoura facebook private messages between Airwars and the pages admin)
  • Ruins of Badiya School, Mansoura, following an alleged Coalition strike, March 21st 2017. (via Mansoura facebook private messages between Airwars and the pages admin)
  • A news bulletin reporting on the alleged Coalition airstrike on Al Mansoura, 20th March 2017. (via JisirTV)
  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via RBSS)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Mohammad Zuheir Rabiji, killed in a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 20th 2017. (via Palmyra Media Centre)
  • Mohammad Zuheir Rabiji, killed in a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 20th 2017. (via Palmyra Media Centre)
  • A video showing a compilation of photographs from the Coalition airstrike on Al Mansoura, 20th March 2017. (via Palmyra Media Centre)
  • Photo from the opening of the Badia school in Syria in 2009. (via HRW 2017)
  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via Human Rights Watch September 2017)
  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via Human Rights Watch September 2017)
  • The aftermath of a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 21st 2017. (via Human Rights Watch September 2017)
  • A report on the US led Coalition airstrike on Al Mansoura, 20th March 2017. (via Human Rights Watch)
  • Amal Ahmed Masri, killed in a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 20th 2017. (via RBSS)
  • Amal Ahmed Masri, killed in a confirmed Coalition strike on a school in Al Mansoura, March 20th 2017. (via RBSS)
  • Deutscher Bundestag Written question. 7 April 2017.

  • Bundestag written question. 10th April 2017.

  • Bundestag Question: Drucksache 18 / 12185 Answer.

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

The undisputed location for Al Badida School (مدرسة البادية) in the town of Al Mansoura (المنصورة) is: 35.81629, 38.75647

  • Al Badida School compound (مدرسة البادية) before the airstrike.

    Date taken:
    January 4, 2016

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

  • Al Badida School compound (مدرسة البادية) after the airstrike.

    Date taken:
    May 30, 2017

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

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
    40
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SDV780636
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 28, 2018
  • March 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria via social media report. The report was reopened after the receipt of new evidence from Human Rights Watch. During a strike on Daesh militant multifunctional center allegedly caused civilian casualties. Forty civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For March 20th-21st the Coalition stated: “Near Ar Raqqah, 19 strikes engaged eight ISIS tactical units; destroyed four petroleum oil lubricant equipment pieces, three barges, three fighting positions, three ISIS headquarters, two VBIED facilities, two VBIEDs, a VBIED factory, a tunnel, a vehicle, a weapons storage facility, and a command and control node; and damaged two supply routes.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    40 – 420
  • (16 children15 women10 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50–56
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (73) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1398

Incident date

August 22, 2017

Location

السخاني, Sukhani neighbourhood, near Hani mosque, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.9522, 39.0164 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

In a major casualty incident, as many as between 33 and 60 civilians, including many women and children, died following US-led Coalition airstrikes on Al-Sakhani, Raqqa. Almost a year later the US-led alliance accepted responsibility for 33 deaths.

According to Baladi, the strike was near the Al-Hani mosque, while Qasioun reported that one of the strikes hit a building in which civilians were sheltering.

Local media reported that the airstrike occurred on the 20th August, however recent up to date Amnesty field research conducted has reported the strike to have occurred on the 22nd at 7pm.

Local media reported that the majority of those killed were from the same family. A Tweet by @AhmadShblii identified eight of the victims as displaced persons from Palmyra.

All sources obtained held the US-led Coalition responsible for the alleged massacre. In addition to the civilians that died, “dozens” were suspected injured.

Albosleh and @LaSyrianNews put the death toll as high as 60.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which also blamed the Coalition, the 42 civilians it said were killed in the strikes included 19 children. This report may have conflated another, however.

A June 2018 report by Amnesty stated that on 20 August 2017 at 7pm, “Coalition forces simultaneously bombed the two neighbouring houses in which the family were staying.” These air strikes reportedly killed 33 Badran family members and other civilians, mostly women and children. A large number of civilians killed in the airstrike were identified in the report.

In its July 2018 civilian casualty report, the Coalition accepted responsibility for the event: “August 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via Amnesty International report. During a strike on a reported Daesh position near a residential area allegedly caused civilian casualties. Thirty three civilians were unintentionally killed.”

The Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

In the Amnesty and Airwars’s joint April 2019 report “War in Raqqa: Rhetoric versus Reality” it was reported that “Thirty-three members of the Badran Family and neighbours, most of them women and children, were killed in the third and most devastating set of four separate air strikes which killed a total of 39 family members and 10 neighbours as they fled from neighbourhood to neighbourhood in search of safety.”

In addition to this, Rasha, a survivor of the strike told Amnesty in a testimony that “Only I, my husband and his brother and cousin survived. In the morning we found Tulip’s body; our baby was dead. We buried her near there, by a tree. I don’t understand why they bombed us. Didn’t the surveillance planes see that we were civilian families?”

The incident occured at 7:00 pm local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (33)

  • Shamsa al Badran Bint Mustafa 40 years old female killed
  • Sahar Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 17 years old female Mohammad's daughter killed
  • Saja Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 15 years old male Mohammad's daughter killed
  • Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 13 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Hamza Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 11 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Daham Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 4 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Saddiqa al Badran Bint Mustafa 38 years old female Shamsa’s sister, Ismael's wife killed
  • Mundher Ismail al Saaid 12 years old male Ismael's and Shamsa's son, twin of Sidra killed
  • Sidra Ismail al Saaid 12 years old female twin of Mundher killed
  • Aseel Ismail al Saaid 6 years old female Ismael's and Shamsa's daughter
  • Sumaya al Badran bint Mustafa 45 years old female widow, no children killed
  • Abta al Badran bint Mustafa 50 years old female widow killed
  • Qays Mohammad al Sahu 24 years old male Abta's son killed
  • Mays Mohammad al Sahu 18 years old female Abta's daughter killed
  • Khud al Badran bint Mustafa 48 years old female divorced killed
  • Rana Hsein al-Shammari 18 years old female Khud's daughter killed
  • Thuraya al Badran bint Mustafa 55 years old female killed
  • Ibrahim early 30s years old male Thuraya's son killed
  • Madonna mid-late 20s years old female Ibrahim's wife killed
  • Thuraya's nephew 1 Child male killed
  • Thuraya's nephew 2 Child male killed
  • Thuraya's niece Child female killed
  • Mohammad Khalil 30 years old male killed
  • Ali al Badran ibn Mustafa 44 years old male no children killed
  • Ibrahim Fahd Ibn Wahab al-Khadr 70 years old male killed
  • Khadija al Sahu 60 years old female Ibrahim's wife killed
  • Tulip Fahd bint AbdulWahab Abbude 1 years old female Rasha's and Abbude's daughter killed
  • Osama Ibrahim Fahd 32 years old male Abbude's brother killed
  • Mohamed Imbrahim Fahd 28 years old male Abbude's brother killed
  • Souad 50 years old female Iraqi national, wife of local man killed
  • Abu Riad 60s years old male Souad's husband killed
  • Maha mid 20s years old female daughter of Souad and Abu Riad killed
  • Amina al Raqim 60s years old female unmarried, was with Souad and Abu Riad killed

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    33 – 60
  • (12–19 children12–13 women3–8 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    12–24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (41) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (31) [ collapse]

  • Khalil Ibrahim Albadran, killed in an alleged Coalition strike near Al-Hini Mosque, (via RBSS)
  • ' Türkçe · Kurdî (Kurmancî) · العربية · English (UK) · Español Gizlilik · Koşullar · Reklamlar · Ad Choices · Çerezler · Diğer Facebook © 2017 Syrian Network for Human Rights - الشبكة السورية لحقوق الإنسان 6 saat · The women Thuraya, Sumayya, Abtta, Khood, Seddiqa, and Shamsa Mustafa al Daham, killed along with 11 members of their family in International Coalition warplanes missiles fired on al Sakhani alley north of Raqqa city, Aug 20.' (via SN4HR)
  • Shahid Abu Aboudabrahim Al Wahab, killed in an alleged Coalition strike on Raqqa (via Sharqiya Voice)
  • Mustafa Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Ibrahim Khalil Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Qais Mohammed Al-Khader (via RBSS)
  • Sama Ibrahim Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Mohammed Ibrahim Abdulwahab Al-Fahed (via RBSS)
  • Ali Ibrahim Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Photo of the aftermath of the air strike (via RWB)
  • Tulip Badran (via Amnesty)
  • Aftermath of the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Members of Al-Badran family killed in the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Satellite images of the destroyed house in the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Abta, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Ahmad, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Ali al Badran ibn Mustapha, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Daham, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Hamza, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Khadja, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Madonna Daham, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Mays, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Osama, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Qays, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Saddiqa, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Sahar, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Saja, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Shamsa, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Sidra, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Thuraya, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Tulip Tuteh, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Al Sakhani (السخاني) neighbourhood of Raqqah, near the Al Hani (الحني) mosque, for which the coordinates are: 35.951373, 39.016984. Following field research by Amnesty International, the incident was found credible by the US-led Coalition, who provided the following MGRS coordinate (accurate to 100m): 37SEV014786.

  • Before strike. (via Amnesty)

  • After strike. (via Amnesty)

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
    33
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV014786
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 26, 2018
  • August 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via Amnesty International report. During a strike on a reported Daesh position near a residential area allegedly caused civilian casualties. Thirty three civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For August 19th-20th: “Near Raqqah, five strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions.” It additionally added that “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, 36 strikes engaged 22 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 29 fighting positions and seven command and control nodes.” That “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, six strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed five fighting positions, an IED, and a command and control node.” And that “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, one strike suppressed an ISIS tactical unit.”

France
  • English
    /
    Original

For Aug 16-22, France report 5 strikes in Iraq and 2 in Syria. Task Force Wagram conducted 60 artillery missions.

United Kingdom
  • English
    /
    Original

‘Sunday 20 August – Tornados and Typhoons hit a target in Raqqa, a group of terrorists and vehicles in eastern Syria, and five Daesh positions around Tal Afar…On Sunday 20 August, Typhoons bombed a further Daesh position in Raqqa. In eastern Syria, Tornados targeted a group of terrorists deployed near the border with Iraq – two Paveways hit their trucks and killed several of the extremists.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    33 – 60
  • (12–19 children12–13 women3–8 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    12–24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (41) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI760

Incident date

June 13, 2017

Location

الشفاء, Mosul, Al Shafaa, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.351282, 43.117944 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

A total of 35 people people from an extended family were killed, including 14 children, 9 women and two imams, when a home and street were bombed in the Shifa neighbourhood of Mosul. Sources said that the family were sheltering in the basement of the house.

Initial claims had placed the toll at 50, while the US-led Coalition estimated that 11 civilians were killed in the attack. Australia later explicitly accepted responsibility for part of the event – conceding between 6 and 18 deaths. Fifteen months later in May 2020, the United States accepted responsibility for a further 11 deaths in the event.

Relatives informed Airwars and others that in fact 35 named people died, from eight closely related families. There was only one survivor.

The Australian Defence Force (ADF’s) investigation was based on estimates of population density, not any on-the-ground research, and no contact was made with the affected family. However within hours of the official announcement of civilian harm, a surviving member of the family told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) that the number of civilians killed was 35, including his brother, sister and other family members.

“My brother has lost all of his family. The number of the family members who died are 35,” said Sheikh Ayman el Saffar. Sheikh Ayman said his brother’s property was also used as a religious community centre.

“The house was hit, they lost money and a religious community centre. He had this religious community centre at that time he used it as his private house. There were no activities at the community centre at the time.”

According to the international alliance, there were strikes by two separate Coalition allies in the near vicinity on the day – each of which killed civilians. Australia accepted responsibility on January 31st 2019 for between 6 and 18 deaths in one of the strikes during the incident, while on the same day the Coalition’s civilian casualty assessment team declared a minimum of 11 deaths. This was later revealed to have been a separate US action. The Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

Ateka Facebook page said on the day of the incident that Sheikh Mohammed Ghanim Al-Saffar – who was an Imam and preacher at the Sheikh Fathi Mosque in Mosul – died after aircraft targeted a sniper standing on the roof and bombed his house. The page said that his body was still under the rubble, together with his family.

Other outlets, including Yaqein and MNN, reported that 50 people in total were under the rubble of the house and presumed dead.

However Sawefa Ateka later reported that some were rescued: “The martyrdom of Madh Muhammad al-Saffar and the rescue of the family of Sheikh Ahmad al-Saffar and the other families who were exposed to their house in Al Shifa neighbourhood for aerial bombing Thank you to the rescue teams and the security forces there.”

Another entry listed the following victims: “The family of Mullah Youssef mourns the family of Al-Saffar by the martyr Sheikh Mohammed Ghanim Al-Saffar in front of the preacher of the Sheikh Fathi Mosque and his family and Sheikh Ahmed Ghanim Al-Saffar Imam and preacher of the Sheikh Muhsin Mosque and his family; and their brother Ammar Ghanem Al-Saffar and his family; and their cousin and their relative Raed Abdul Salam Al-Saffar and many people, after the fall of a missile from the plane on their house, which led to the fall of the house on them I am God and I return to him.”

Sheikh Mohammed Ghanim Al-Saffar was described by Qoraish as “one of ISIS’s most formidable enemies”.

@sonawa1 tweeted that civilians were “trapped under the rubble of the house of Abdul Ghani Halawaji”. It is likely that Abdul Ghani Halawaji is a misspell – with Halawaji possibly referring to the village the family originally came from – rather than the Mosul neighbourhoood from which they now take their name.

Australia’s Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, spoke about the event following the ADF’s concession: “It is not clear what precisely went on. But I know our Defence force people will always be doing everything they can to ensure casualties are avoided.” The PM also described the event as “a terrible incident”, with the deaths of civilians “difficult and tragic.”

Airwars conducted an extensive interview with Engineer Amjad al Saffar, a family elder, in February 2019, in which the names of all victims were handed over.

In May 2020 in its annual civilian harm report to Congress, the Pentagon confirmed that US forces had been responsible for at least 11 deaths in this event. Asked to comment from Mosul on the Pentagon’s recent admission that its aircraft too had played a role in the mass casualty event, Engineer Amjad told Airwars: “As a well known and respected Mosul family, we feel both very sad and disappointed to learn of the US’s confession – three years after our catastrophe.- of their own role in an airstrike which killed so many. Along with Australia we hold the US fully responsible for our heavy loss of 35 family members, and demand both an apology and financial compensation.”

The incident occured at 10:00 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (5)

  • Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 61 years old male Brother of Sheikh Mohammed killed
  • Ahlam Ali Jasim Al Tai 56 years old female Wife of Ammar killed
  • Shahad Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 13 years old female killed
  • Sara Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 10 years old female killed
  • Ghanim Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Alsaffar 16 years old male killed

Family members (8)

  • Mohamed Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 48 years old male killed
  • Muna Esma t Abdulrahman Al Bakua 43 years old female killed
  • Madeh Mohamed Ghanim Ali Al Saffar 21 years old male killed
  • Mawdda Mohamed Ghanin Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 19 years old female killed
  • Safiah Mohmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 16 years old female killed
  • Malak Mohamed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 13 years old female killed
  • Maram Mohmed Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 10 years old female killed
  • Rehana Mohamed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 5 years old female killed

Family members (6)

  • Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 47 years old male killed
  • Amna Sabah Hussen Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 33 years old female killed
  • Teba Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 16 years old female killed
  • Rehma Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 14 years old female killed
  • Ameer Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 9 years old male killed
  • Reem Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 4 years old female killed

Family members (6)

  • Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 55 years old male killed
  • Asma Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 52 years old female killed
  • Wisam Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 25 years old male killed
  • Mustafa Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 22 years old male killed
  • Bilal Raed Abdelsam Ali Mohaned Al Saffar 19 years old male killed
  • Fatima Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 15 years old female killed

Family members (2)

  • Nadia Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 57 years old female killed
  • Mumen Oqba Mohmed 25 years old male killed

Family members (2)

  • Ayser Abdelhameed Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 45 years old male killed
  • Awrad Ayser Abdelhameed Ali Mohmed Al Saffar 13 years old female killed

Family members (4)

  • Arzak Andelhameed Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 54 years old female killed
  • Zahra Khalid Selman Mohamed Taha 21 years old female killed
  • Sura Khalid Selman Mohamed Taha 19 years old female killed
  • Ali Khalid Selman Mohamed Taha 18 years old male killed

Family members (2)

  • Salheh Hani Hassan Ali Mohamed Al Saffar 32 years old male killed
  • Maram Saleh Hani Hassan Ali Al Saffar 1.5 years old female killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    35
  • (14 children9 women12 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    Unknown
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (26) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (17) [ collapse]

  • Sheikhs Mohamed and Ahmed Ghanim Al Saffar were popular local preachers – and a thorn in the side of their ISIS occupiers (Picture courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved.)
  • Sheikh Mohammed Ghanem Al-Saffar and Sheikh Ahmed Ghanim Al-Saffar (via Mosul Ateka)
  • Nineveh Media Centre posted an image of the bombing location, in an effort to direct rescue services with the following message: 'Urgent Appeal 50 people in the house Al-Sheikh Ahmad Al-Saffar Al-Shifa neighbourhood was shelled today and the families in the house appeal to all the factions to rescue them. The nearest force to them is the Federal Police Force.'
  • Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved)
  • Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohmed Al Saffar (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family.)
  • Ghanim Ammar Ghanim Ali Mohamed Al Saffar (Image courtesy of Al Saffar family)
  • Madeh Mohamed Ghanim Ali Al Saffar (Image courtesy of Al Saffar family)
  • Bilal Raed Abdelsam Ali Mohaned Al Saffar (Image courtesy of Al Saffar family)
  • Ameer Ahmed Ghanim Ali Mohmed Al Saffar, aged nine, had spent a third of his life under ISIS occupation when he died. He was one of 14 children killed on June 13th 2017 (Picture courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved.)
  • Wisam and Mustafa Raed Abdelsalam Ali Mohamed Al Saffar (Image courtesy of the family)
  • Mumen Oqba Mohmed (Image courtesy of Al Saffar family)
  • Photo montage of some of the 35 victims of June 13th 2017 strikes by Australian and US aircraft, courtesy of the Al Saffar family.
  • Ruins of a family home in which 35 civilians died at Mosul on June 13th 2017 - in what is now known to have been US and Australian airstrikes (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved.)
  • Ruins of a family home in which 35 civilians died in Coalition strikes on June 13th 2017 (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved.)
  • Ruins of a family home in which 35 civilians died in Coalition strikes on June 13th 2017 (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family. All rights reserved.)
  • The hole from which survivor Kareema escaped between strikes on a Mosul family home (Image courtesy of the Al Saffar family.)
  • Table from May 2020 Pentagon report to Congress, conceding additional US civilian harm events in Iraq and Syria during 2017.

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Shifa neighbourhood (حي الشفاء) in West Mosul. Airwars geolocated the two locations named in a screenshot published by Nineveh Media Centre. The coordinates for the house of Sheikh Ahmad Saffar (بيت الشيخ احمد الصفار) are: 36.351678, 43.118042. The coordinates for Ibn Al-Atheer Station (محطة ابن الاثير) are: 36.351064, 43.117920.

  • The house of Sheikh Ahmad Saffar and Ibn Al-Atheer Station, which were named in a screenshot published by Nineveh Media Centre.

    Date taken:
    December 29, 2004

    Imagery:
    © 2019 DigitalGlobe

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
    Inside target building
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    11–29
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF313241
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jan 31, 2019
  • June 13, 2017, near al-Shifa neighbourhood, Mosul, Iraq via Airwars report. Coalition air assets struck multiple ISIS targets in defense of ground forces. Regrettably, since the targets were in the midst of residential structures, it is likely that 11 civilians were unintentionally killed as a result of two Coalition engagements on the same street.

Australia
  • Jan 31, 2019
  • Defence can confirm that an Australian airstrike or nearby Coalition airstrikes in the Al Shafaar neighbourhood of Mosul on 13 June 2017 may have caused civilian casualties. An Australian investigation found that it is not possible to determine the number of civilian casualties that occurred as a result of the airstrikes. The Coalition assesses that between six and 18 civilians may have been killed. It is also not possible to determine if the civilian casualties occurred as a result of the Australian airstrike, the nearby Coalition airstrikes, or from other actors. Chief of Joint Operations, Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld, says the Australian strike was requested by Iraqi Security Forces and was in full compliance with the law of armed conflict and applicable rules of engagement. “The ADF takes all feasible precautions to minimise the risk of civilian casualties,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said. “On this occasion, it was assessed that the enemy intended to attack Iraqi forces from the targeted location, threatening imminent loss of life or serious injury.” The strikes occurred during Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) operations to re-take West Mosul. Daesh were attacking ISF positions and fleeing civilians with a combination of small arms, heavy machine guns, mortars and rocket propelled grenades. The ISF identified three enemy personnel in a building and four enemy personnel in the adjacent courtyard, armed with heavy weapons. “Based upon the proximity of the enemy to the Iraqi forces, the nature of the target and the circumstances of the fighting in Mosul at the time, I can confirm that this action complied with Australia’s rules of engagement and the Laws of Armed Conflict,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said. Post-strike assessments confirmed the 500lb precision guided munition struck the intended target and achieved the effect desired by the Iraqi ground commander. The civilian casualties were claimed to have been located in a building in the vicinity of the Australian and coalition strikes. Air Marshal Hupfeld says that while there was no specific intelligence to indicate civilians were present at the targeted site, it was impossible to be sure under the urgent circumstances facing the Iraqi forces at the time. “There is a degree of uncertainty surrounding this incident. We know that the Australian strike does not precisely correspond with the information provided in the claim, however it was close by. We do not definitively know how these people were killed.” “But we do know from our review of the events that our aircrew made no error in this mission. They delivered their ordnance precisely onto the designated target in accordance with their rules of engagement. All authorities for the strike were valid and lawful.” “We also know that Daesh deliberately and deceptively caused civilian casualties by concealing non-combatants under fighting positions and exposing their fighters to induce Coalition airstrikes,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said. “Any loss of civilian life is highly regrettable and we treat all allegations seriously. Ultimately we have determined that it is possible civilians were unintentionally killed by the Coalition during these strikes.” Australia was first advised of the potential claim in January 2018. The Coalition assessed the claim to be credible in December 2018 and announced the finding today. Australia has previously announced involvement in three separate potential civilian casualty allegations resulting from strikes conducted during Operation Okra. These all occurred during the Mosul offensive on 30 March 2017, 3 May 2017, and 7 June 2017. Australian strike aircraft concluded operations in January 2018.

United States
  • May 6, 2020
  • Since last year’s Section 1057 report, CJTF-OIR assessed that an additional 21 reports of civilian casualties during 2017 were credible, with approximately 71 civilians killed and approximately 13 civilians injured as result of U.S. military operations. With these additional assessments, CJTF-OIR assessed that a total number of 191 reports of civilian casualties during 2017 were credible, with approximately 864 civilians killed and approximately 219 civilians injured. 13-Jun-17 Mosul, Iraq Air 0 civilians injured 11 civilians killed

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For June 12th-13th the Coalition publicly stated: “Near Mosul, five strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units and destroyed 14 fighting positions, six mortar systems, two sniper positions, a weapons cache and a tactical vehicle.”

Unknown Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown
  • Unknown position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    35
  • (14 children9 women12 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    Unknown
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (26) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI537

Incident date

March 13, 2017

Location

الموصل الجديدة, Mosul, Mosul al-Jadid / New Mosul, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.32944, 43.095 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 1m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 1m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Relatives, local residents and press sources said up to 29 people from two families were killed after Coalition airstrikes struck their houses in the New Mosul neighborhood of West Mosul. The Coalition later conceded causing 27 deaths in the event.

According to Al Jazeera Iraq, 29 civilians, mostly children and women, were killed and many others were injured due to airstrikes and artillery shelling on the Monday evening. Other sources placed the event at 4pm to 5pm the following day.

Ahmad Al Jomaily reported on Facebook that “Ahmad Al-Abdullah al-Jumaili, his wife and his son Bashar al-Jumaili were killed” and other family members were missing.

Salih Alluhaiby also reported several victims, however without mentioning the names: “It moved to the mercy of God the compassionate, my sister and her daughter and her family and the family’s nephew after the bombing of Coalition aircraft in the New Mosul.”

Om Esraa posted a graphic video on Facebook and said: “Hours ago I communicated with parties in search of something to get us to the family of a disaster under the rubble in the New Mosul [neighbourhood], whose house was bombed the day before yesterday at ten in the morning (…)”.

The Los Angeles Times later reported the following: “Ihab Adnan was finishing removing 27 of his relatives who had been killed in his grandfather’s house in an airstrike on March 14 — a date outside the time frame the U.S.-led coalition is investigating. “Daesh was not letting us go out,” said Ihab Adnan, 35, a laborer, using a common term for Islamic State as he picked his way through the remains of his uncle’s house next door. Adnan pointed to a photo in the ruins of his 13-year-old cousin, Ali Ramadan, whose body was now zipped in a body bag. He said a series of airstrikes began at just after 5 p.m., and “everything was exploding.”

He could hear his relatives screaming next door. Adnan was screaming, too. He emerged to discover several families had been buried in their collapsed houses: 18 in his uncle’s house, 72 in a nearby home, 130 in another. He could hear some of the injured crying. “We were running and taking people out” of the ruins, Adnan said.”

Buzzfeed field investigators also placed the event on March 14th, providing the following incident report to Airwars:

“GPS Coordinates: 36.329583, 43.095028
Date and approximate time: March 14 at around 4pm
Casualties: 26 civilians killed, including nine family members of Yusuf Yahya Abed. This was one house that had been split into two. This was a kinetic strike, launched as part of an ISF assault into the neighborhood.
Comments: This is down the street from Site A. Residents couldn’t say for sure was the target could have been.”

In its September 2017 monthly casualty report, the Coalition accepted responsibility: “March 14, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via media report: During a strike on ISIS fighters engaging partner forces from a fighting position, it was assessed that 27 civilians in an adjacent structure were unintentionally killed.”

Officials also supplied coordinates to Airwars, which exactly matched those of the al Jadida event.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (3)

  • Ahmad Al-Abdullah al-Jumaili Adult male Father killed
  • Wife of Ahmad Al-Abdullah al-Jumaili Adult female Mother killed
  • Bashar al-Jumaili Age unknown male Son killed
  • Ali Ramadan 13 years old male killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    27 – 29
  • (2 children2 women2–3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • The aftermath of alleged Coalition airstrikes on New Mosul neighbourhood, which caused the death of two families (via Al Jazeera)

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

  • The Military Grid Reference System coordinate (38SLF2901422174), accurate to 1 m, published by the US-led Coalition with their Credible assessment of the civilian harm incident.

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

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
    Killed by strike blast
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    27
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF2901422174
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Sep 1, 2019
  • March 14, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via media report: During a strike on ISIS fighters engaging partner forces from a fighting position, it was assessed that 27 civilians in an adjacent structure were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For March 12th-13th the Coalition publicly stated: “Near Mosul, six strikes engaged six ISIS tactical units, an ISIS staging area and an ISIS sniper team; destroyed 16 fighting positions, five VBIEDs, four mortar systems, two rocket-propelled grenade systems, two supply caches, two VBIED factories, and a vehicle; damaged 22 supply routes; and suppressed 14 ISIS mortar teams, two ISIS tactical units, and an ISIS sniper team.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    27 – 29
  • (2 children2 women2–3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1012

Incident date

June 15–16, 2017

Location

جامع المنصوري, Al Mansouri mosque, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.951933, 39.019327 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Nearby landmark level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Nearby landmark

Airwars assessment

A total of 25 civilians including one woman and 10 children died in SDF/Coalition shelling near the Al Mansouri mosque in Raqqa, according to local media. The US-led Coalition later conceded the event following an Amnesty field investigation.

Multiple reports said that a home near the mosque was hit with artillery or mortar shells or rocket attacks.

According to @24Raqqa “more than 10 mortar shells fell on the perimeter of Al-Mansouri Mosque and the old mosque in the center of the city of Al-Raqqa”.

Meanwhile, @raqqa_r_w_b reported that Dalal Ahmad Hussein al-Nayef died when a home next to the mosque was struck and Al Ragga Truth reported: “The martyrdom of Ahmed Al-Hussein Al-Nayef from injuries sustained several days ago by the bombardment in the vicinity of Al-Mansouri Mosque.”

In February 2019, the Coalition assessed this event to be non-credible. Their report noted: “After review of all available strike records it was determined that more likely than not civilian casualties did not occur as a result of a Coalition strike.”

Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently published graphic images showing casualties and destruction of Raqqa on June 16th, though the pictures were not necessarily specific to this incident.

According to a local source interviewed by Amnesty International’s field researchers, the first strike came at around 7.30pm near the Old Mosque on Sharia Jama al Qadeemeh.

In a later Amnesty/Airwars study of the incident, it was reported in the Amnesty and Airwars’s joint April 2019 report “War in Raqqa: Rhetoric versus Reality” report that, Ahmed, who lived in the centre of Raqqa, near the Old Mosque, told Amnesty International that on 15 June a public gathering of IS members prompted shelling which killed 25 civilians.

“There had been a problem between IS and local civilians. I was in the area buying fruit juices for Iftar. It was around 7.15 in the evening. I saw a heated situation develop and I stopped on the corner to see what was going on. People were gathered outside the Old Mosque where IS used to exchange money for Durham Da’ashi [IS currency]. Some people got into an argument with an IS guy about the exchange rate. The IS guy took out his pistol and hit a man on the head with it. A fight broke out and around 20 local civilians beat two IS guys to death.

Soon afterwards six or seven IS cars arrived on the scene full of armed IS guys. They ordered everyone to return home immediately. They closed down all the shops and blocked off the streets. I went home, just down Sharia Jama al Qademeeh.

The first strike came at around 7.30pm. When I heard the explosion I ran from my home with my wife and three children, one of whom is disabled. We ran to a neighbour’s house and hid in the cellar. There were 20 people from the neighbourhood in the cellar. He had prepared everything so there was food and water. We didn’t come out for two days.

All night they shelled, every 15 minutes, with mortars and artillery. You could tell from the sound. The street is 2km long. There were around 100 IS in the area and around 2,000 civilians. When the shelling began the IS got in their cars and escaped. They [the SDF/coalition] killed 25 people on Sharia Jama al Qadeemeh, including 10 children. I know because I met up with my neighbours and other people from the area at “aind al Democrati” [the SDF collection point for civilians beyond the frontline]. We all talked and everyone knew someone who had been killed that night.

One of the strikes hit my house and destroyed it. It was an Arab house of three storeys in Jama al Qadeemeh. It also destroyed the adjoining house. The family living there was killed. Three brothers, Jihad aged 20-23, Ahmed aged 18 and Mahmoud, aged 15 or 16. Jihad’s wife Beytool was also killed. She was 19 or 20 and had been 2 months pregnant. Another person killed was Abu Maher, a local motorcycle mechanic.

When we came out of the cellar we arranged to leave the area. I paid the smugglers 400USD to get me and my family out of Raqqa. We crossed the river and then crossed back again at Sahel where the SDF was positioned”.

The incident occured at approximately 7:30 pm local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Jihad 20-13 years old male killed
  • Beytool 19 years old female pregnant Wife of Jihad killed
  • Dalal Ahmad Hussein al-Nayef Adult male killed
  • Obeida Mohammed Aldagl Age unknown male killed
  • Amina El-Hajj Taha Age unknown female killed
  • Ahmed 18 years old male killed
  • Mahmoud 16 years old male killed
  • Abu Maher Age unknown male killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    25
  • (1–10 children2 women5 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (20) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (12) [ collapse]

  • Image showing destruction in Raqqa due to shelling on 16th, but not necessarily specific to this incident (via RBSS)
  • Image showing destruction in Raqqa due to shelling on 16th, but not necessarily specific to this incident (via RBSS)
  • Image showing destruction in Raqqa due to shelling on 16th, but not necessarily specific to this incident (via RBSS)
  • Image showing destruction in Raqqa due to shelling on 16th, but not necessarily specific to this incident (via RBSS)
  • Image showing destruction in Raqqa due to shelling on 16th, but not necessarily specific to this incident (via RBSS)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photo showing victim killed by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • Photo showing injured child by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photo showing victim killed by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photo showing victim killed by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photo showing victim killed by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • Photo showing victim killed by alleged Coalition shelling on Raqqa June 16th 2017. The picture is however not necessarily related to this specific event (via RBSS)
  • Ahmed Hussein Al-Nayef was reportedly killed by the contested shelling on al-Mansouri Mosque, Raqqa (via RBSS)

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

  • Location of the destroyed building seen before the strike on June 2, 2017 (via Amnesty International)

  • Location of the destroyed building seen after the strike on June 9, 2017 (via Amnesty International)

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
    Killed by strike blast
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    25
  • Stated location
    near al-Mansouri Mosque, Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV015782
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Feb 28, 2019
  • 5. June 15, 2017, near Raqqa, Syria, via Amnesty International. Coalition aircraft engaged ISIS fighters, a sniper position, and multiple defensive fighting positions. Unfortunately, 25 civilians were killed due to their proximity to the targets.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For June 15th-16th the Coalition reported: “Near Raqqah, 20 strikes engaged 14 ISIS tactical units and a sniper and destroyed nine fighting positions, four vehicles, three mortar systems, two supply caches, two ISIS headquarters, a heavy machine gun, and a home-made explosives factory.” It also additionally reported that “On June 15, near Raqqah, Syria, six strikes destroyed eight fighting positions, an ISIS headquarters, and a tunnel, and suppressed two snipers.” And that “On June 15, near Raqqah, Syria, one strike destroyed six fighting positions, five ISIS staging areas, two command and control nodes, an ISIS headquarters, and a supply cache, and damaged 10 fighting positions and two VBIED facilities.”

For June 16th-17th the Coalition reported: “Near Raqqah, 25 strikes engaged 21 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 34 fighting positions, three tunnels, three mortar systems, two vehicles and a VBIED facility.” It was additionally reported that “On June 16, near Raqqah, Syria, eight strikes engaged four ISIS tactical units; destroyed four fighting positions, two ISIS headquarters, two VBIED facilities, and two VBIEDs; and suppressed a sniper team.”

France
  • English
    /
    Original

For June 14th-20th, 19 strikes were made by French aircraft in Iraq and Syria. Most of them were carried out during the Battle of Mosul, in support of the Iraqi fighters engaged in the fighting to drive ISIL out of its positions in the North of the Medina. The other strikes were carried out in support of the fighting for the capture of Raqqah, and against flows of arms and fighters in Iraq and Syria.

Cette semaine, les aéronefs de l’opération Chammal ont réalisé 34 sorties aériennes dont 31 de reconnaissance armée ou d’appui au sol (CAS) et 3 de recueil de renseignements. 19 frappes ont été réalisées par les avions français en Irak et en Syrie. La majeure partie d’entre elle ont été réalisées dans le cadre de la bataille de Mossoul, en appui des combattants irakiens engagés dans les combats pour chasser Daech de ses positions au Nord de la Médina. Les autres frappes ont été réalisées en appui des combats pour la prise de Raqqah, et contre des flux d’armes et de combattants en Irak et en Syrie.

United Kingdom
  • English
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    Original

Friday 16 June – Typhoons bombed two Daesh positions in Raqqa, while Tornados and Typhoons attacked five positions in Mosul…Typhoons were again in action over Raqqa on Friday 16 June, when they bombed two further Daesh positions. Typhoons and Tornados, flying as mixed pairs, employed one Brimstone missile and four Paveway IVs to eliminate two machine-gun teams and three other Daesh strongpoints.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    25
  • (1–10 children2 women5 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (20) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS705

Incident date

April 18, 2017

Location

البوكمال, Abu Kamal, Deir Ezzor, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

34.44254, 40.92114 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

In a major civilian casualty incident, up to 36 civilians including 14 children died and dozens more were wounded in airstrikes on Abu Kamal, near the Syrian-Iraqi border, according to local sources – though reports were conflicted as to whether the US-led Coalition or the Iraqi air force were liable. The Coalition later took responsibility for 25 deaths.

In its reporting at the time Shaam News pointed towards the Coalition, putting the death toll at 23, including five children, reporting that there had been “several rocket attacks on the vicinity of the Egyptian roundabout and the East School in front of the electricity company in the city.”

Euphrates Post also attributed the event to the Coalition – again putting the death toll at 23 which included 14 children, five women and four men, with dozens more injured. Its source reported that “At approximately 11:30 pm yesterday, the residential area in the vicinity of the Al Masriya roundabout at the end of Al-Maarri Street was hit by missiles and air strikes. According to eyewitnesses, this is the first time that the city of Al Bukamal has been targeted with these highly explosive missiles – thought to be land to land missiles. The targeted house belongs to one of the expatriates in the Gulf (Khalil al-Hamdan Abu Saif). His home had been occupied by Daesh who were using it as a headquarters and warehouse for weapons and equipment”.

Other sources put the death toll higher. For example, 811Syria, also blaming the Coalition, said that 26 Syrians died and four Iraqis. JisirTV put the number killed as high as 26 – and attributed the event to the Coalition. One source, AJA, referred specifically to “heavy American shelling”.

However, some other sources said that the Iraqi air force carried out the strikes: Al Jazeera, Shahba, Almo3tasem91, Orient and Yaqein referred to “Iraqi air raids” and “Iraqi warplanes”. Yaqein added “sources told us that ‘this attack is not the first carried out by Iraqi aircraft on sites inside Syrian territory.’”

Smart News Agency did not identify the culprit but said that “warplanes are likely to have launched several missile attacks on the vicinity of the Egyptian [al masri ] roundabout and the East School, opposite the electricity company”.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that three members of IS were also killed.

In addition to those named sources reported the death of four member of a displaced Iraqi family.

On July 7th, the Coalition confirmed responsibility for this event. In a release, it wrote: “April 17, 2017, near Abu Kamal, Syria, via social media report: During a strike on an ISIS headquarters building, it was assessed that 25 civilians were unintentionally killed and 40 were injured in adjacent structures by secondary explosions from the target building.”

In July 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with the location for this incident accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The incident occured around midnight.

The victims were named as:

Family members (1)

  • Mohammed Jedaie Adult male plus seven members of the family killed

Family members (1)

  • Mazen al-Mardoud plus three members of the family killed

Family members (1)

  • Shawish family four members killed
  • The wife of Abdul-Jabbar Thabet al-Taweel Adult female killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    25 – 36
  • (14 children5 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    40
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (42) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (11) [ collapse]

  • The aftermath of an alleged Coalition raid on Abu Kamal, April 17th/18th (via Sharqiya Voice)
  • A photograph from Abu Kamal during an alleged Coalition night raid, April 17/18th (via Euphrates Post)
  • Abu Kamal in flames, the aftermath of alleged Coalition airstrikes April 17/18th (via Euphrates Post)
  • An update from UCAbilAraby: "The coalition strikes against Da'ash in Syria last Sunday resulted in the destruction of 25 targets of IS near the Al-Raqqa, Deir Al-Zour, and ABu Kamal" (via @USEmbassySyria) [Tweet posted April 18th]
  • A video still of a child civilian wounded by alleged Coalition strikes in Abu Kamal April 17/18th (via Shariqa Voice Facebook) [Original video no longer available]
  • A video still of a child civilian wounded by alleged Coalition strikes in Abu Kamal April 17/18th (via Shariqa Voice Facebook) [Original video no longer available]
  • A video still of a child civilian wounded by alleged Coalition strikes in Abu Kamal April 17/18th (via Shariqa Voice Facebook) [Original video no longer available]
  • A video still of a child civilian wounded by alleged Coalition strikes in Abu Kamal April 17/18th (via Shariqa Voice Facebook) [Original video no longer available]
  • A video still of a child civilian wounded by alleged Coalition strikes in Abu Kamal April 17/18th (via Shariqa Voice Facebook) [Original video no longer available]
  • Extensive material destruction in Abu Kamal, the impact of alleged Coalition airstrikes April 17/18th (via Sharqiya Voice)
  • The house of Khalil al Hamdan, reportedly targeted by the Coalition. According to the source it was occupied by IS and converted to a weapons store. The photo was taken before suspected strikes. (via Sharqiya Voice)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the city of Abu Kamal (also known as Al Bukamal, البوكمال) in Deir Ezzor governorate. The coordinates for Abu Kamal are: 34,466049, 40,907593. The Al Masriya (دوار المصرية) roundabout at the end of Al Maari street (نهاية شارع المعري) is mentioned. The coordinates for the Egyptian roundabout are: 34.442177, 40.923112. Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest city at 34.466049, 40.907593

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
    Killed by secondary explosion(s), No reason given
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    25
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    40
  • Stated location
    near Abu Kamal, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU765129
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • April 17, 2017, near Abu Kamal, Syria, via social media report: During a strike on an ISIS headquarters building, it was assessed that 25 civilians were unintentionally killed and 40 were injured in adjacent structures by secondary explosions from the target building.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For April 16th-17th, the Coalition reported: “Near Abu Kamal, two strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS vehicle.”

For April 17th-18th, the Coaltion reported: ” Near Dayr Az Zawr, four strikes destroyed four ISIS well heads, a command and control node and an ISIS vehicle.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    25 – 36
  • (14 children5 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    40
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (42) [ collapse]