Local sources said that three named civilians were killed after alleged Coalition airstrikes targeted near a medical centre in the Officers neighbourhood near the Fourth Bridge.
Mosul Ateka named Dr. Mohammed Tayyip ِِAl Leyla, former Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, and his wife, Dr. Fatima Alhyial and their young daughter as victims of the airstrikes. They had reportedly stayed “for more than two days under the rubble after the bombing of their home, located in the Officers neighborhood.”
Several other sources reported the death of Professor Alleyla, praising his expertise in the field of engineering.
Iraqyoon quoted a security source who said that the three bodies were found under the rubble. The source added that “the anti-terror forces are trying to rescue two families from the rubble of their homes in the Officers district, because their houses [were hit by] aerial bombardment by coalition aircraft.” In another post, Iraqyoon cited a source saying that “The civilian martyrs of Mosul have by far outnumbered martyrs among fighters.” Wesal TV later suggested there may have been a second family buried under the rubble.
On January 26th Stop The War published more details on the death of Dr al Leyla: “Dear Friends, As you might have heard, the American Coalition have been bombing civilian areas in Mosul. Over the past few days the coalition targeted 3 houses of well known professors and researchers in Mosul University. One of them was my college professor and mentor Prof. Dr Mohamad Tybee Al-Layla.
“Dr Al-Layla got his PhD in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of Texas, USA. Worked as a faculty member in the Department of Civil Engineering in the Engineering College of University of Mosul since the early seventies of the last century. He was assigned as a Chairman of the Civil Engineering Department and the dean of the college twice. Supervised more than 30 PhD and Master degree thesis in Geotechnical Engineering and Civil Engineering. He published 48 research and technical papers in Iraq and abroad, and became an editing member of 3 scientific journals and magazines. He received the prestigious award of the Iraqi Science Day on June 2nd, 2014.
“He worked sincerely and hard for about 40 years to educate and help thousands of highly efficient and intelligent engineers graduate, many of whom became ministers, deputy ministers, academics and high ranking executive directors in Geotechnical, Irrigation Engineering and other civil and political posts inside Iraq and abroad. Being one his students, it breaks our hearts that even though Dr Al-Layla was such a great scientific Iraqi figure who never let down or disappointed the University of Mosul community or even the city of Mosul in its hardest times, the crime of targeting his house by the American Coalition and his painful death along with his innocent family under the rubbles of his house, will remain an unforgettable disaster to us, one that all parties hold responsibility for, that reminds all of us that we are still sinking into the abyss the criminal US occupation of Iraq has led to. May his soul rest in piece, and the souls of the many innocent thousands dying every month in Mosul by ISIS and the Coalition without accountability nor remorse.”
Between April 2016 and June 2017, reporters Azmat Khan and Anand Gopal visited the sites of nearly 150 airstrikes across northern Iraq, as part of an investigation for the New York Times Magazine. Regarding this specific incident, they noted that, “Ahmed al-Layla tried to persuade his parents to escape from Mosul with his sister, Eaman, and join him in Erbil, but they were stubborn. His father, Mohammed Tayeb al-Layla, a former dean of engineering at Mosul University, refused to abandon his prized library, shelf after shelf of books on engineering and soil mechanics.
“As the Iraqi Army approached, neighbors told us, several ISIS fighters broke into the home, climbed to the roof and assumed sniper positions. Ahmed’s father raced up in pursuit, with Ahmed’s mother, Dr. Fatima Habbal, a prominent gynaecologist, close behind. Not long after, an airstrike flattened the home, killing the snipers, along with Ahmed’s parents and sister.”
According to the reporters, this incident took place on January 10th instead of January 9th.
In October 2017, the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, claiming that “The [initial Airwars] report contains insufficient information of the time, location and details to assess its credibility.
In their February 2020 civilian casualty report, the US-led Coalition assessed reports that they were responsible for civilian harm in this strike as “non-credible”, stating that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area at that time.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
- Dr. Mohammed Tayyip ِِAl Leyla Adult male Dean of the Faculty of Engineering killed
- Dr. Fatima Alhyial Adult female killed
- Eaman Adult female Daughter of Mohammed and Fatima killed
Sources (14) [ collapse]
Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.
US-led Coalition Assessment:
Civilian casualty statements
Jan. 9, 2017, near the Dhubat neighborhood in Mosul, Iraq, via Airwars report. The report contains insufficient information of the time, location and details to assess its credibility.
Jan. 9, 2017, in Mosul, Iraq, via New York Times and Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 816/CI407 38SLF342233
Original strike reports
For January 8th-9th the Coalition publicly noted : “Near Mosul, five strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units; destroyed three ISIL-held buildings, two vehicles, two mortar systems, a rocket propelled grenade launcher, a VBIED staging facility, and a VBIED; damaged 29 supply routes; and suppressed an ISIL tactical unit and a mortar team.”