A woman and child may have been injured in a major Australian airstrike at Fallujah on December 21st 2014, according to an internal CENTCOM assessment. The pre-planned attack was focused on a’suspected weapons factory’ in the city. However, 10 minutes after the last bomb had been dropped by an Australian aircraft, “a probable female and probable child were observed on FMV [full motion video] to walk through the target area.”
As the overhead observation continued, the child was taken by motorbike to Fallujah hospital, while the woman “walked to the median strip on the road and lay down, and was not observed any further.”
Despite the apparent seriousness of the report, both CENTCOM and the Australian military concluded that “there is insufficient information to warrant further inquiry.” According to a declassified internal report, “The lack of urgency and fact that the child walked apparently normally suggested his injuries were not life-threatening.”
While its aircraft were not implicated by CENTCOM’s internal assessment, Canada also reported being a part of the mission which attacked the Fallujah facility (see below.)
Multiple civilian fatalities were in fact reported at Fallujah that night, with BBC Arabic describing medical sources at the city’s main hospital as “receiving 13 bodies and seven wounded, including women and children who fell during the incessant shelling.” The casualties were attributed both to the Iraqi military and to “air strikes launched by the international coalition on the city of Fallujah on Sunday night (21st) and until dawn Monday,targeting places where IS fighters are believed to be.” Al Ghad instead reported eight fatalities from Coalition strikes in the wider region that day.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
Sources (7) [ collapse]
US-led Coalition Assessment:
Civilian casualty statements
May 1, 2015
Two unknown individuals may have been wounded as a result of a deliberate strike conducted by the Austrlians on a suspected weapons factory in Fallujah. The female walked to the median strip on the road and lay down, and was not observed any further. // Assessed to be insufficient information to determine CIVCAS.
Original strike reports