Local sources reported that the international Coalition and/or US aircraft had carried out airstrikes in New Mosul neighborhood, West Mosul, leaving up to 30 civilians dead and 14 others wounded. The Coalition later confirmed killing eight civilians in Mosul that day.
Iraq News Center said that bombing by “international Coalition aircraft” had led to the death and wounding of civilians, including women and children. Raedlay spoke of a “US raid” and reported the same number of dead and injured.
Amsi News said that “so-called international coalition raids into residential neighborhoods in the area of New Mosul… caused the death of 21 civilians on the spot, and injuring 14 others, as well as great destruction of property and homes.”
Prevision posted a video of the aftermath in which a witness reported a total number of 30 bodies: “It’s a residential compound including four houses. Each one includes two floors which were completely destroyed by Coalition crusade airstrikes…we got out 14 bodies as yet, and there are 9 bodies still under rubble, and there are 4 women bodies and three children bodies in the house behind this compound…mostly kids and women.”
Alquds and Alwaght quoted Reuters saying that that the raids targeted the house of a senior ISIL leader, Abdul Qadir, who was not at home at the time of the bombing. However, several of his family members were reportedly killed. Alwaght spoke of “tens of civilians” massacred and blamed the Coalition.
An Amnesty International field investigation reported the following: “On 13 January at around 8.15am, explosions destroyed nine dwellings in al-Shuhada neighbourhood. “Kamel” and “Hashem”, two 26-year-old men from the area, described what they believe was a helicopter strike, which destroyed Kamel’s uncle’s house. They said the helicopter fired three times, with each rocket it launched destroying three single-room dwellings. Nine dwellings were destroyed in total.
“Hashem” described the attack as follows: “I was close by at my mother’s house. We were eating breakfast. At 8.15am and without warning the first rocket struck the homes, followed by two others. Each came from a different direction. It was all over in five or 10 minutes. After the last rocket landed we ran down to the scene. We were scared but we’re Arabs and if there are dead people we must go down to them. We dug the bodies out. We pulled them out of the rubble. They were torn apart. Heads and arms had been severed. The target was a well-known IS commander called Harbi Abdel Gadir. He was killed, along with almost everyone else in the homes: more than 40 people. All the women and children were killed. There were only three survivors, Mohamed, Asher and Salman. They were taken to an IS-run hospital.
According to the witnesses, this strike killed one IS target at a cost of 40 civilian lives. Based upon the information available, this attack should be investigated as a possible disproportionate attack.”
The incident occured at 08:15:00 local time.
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The Amnesty report of the incident mentions the neighbourhood of Shuhada, for which the generic coordinates are: 36.316076, 43.099112. Other reports mention New Mosul, or the West of Mosul, which is where the Shuhada neighbourhood is located. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.
Attached to this civilian harm incident is a provisional reconciliation of the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, based on matching date and locational information.
The declassified documents were obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, and are included 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
Oct 27, 2017
After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.
Original strike reports
For January 11th-12th the Coalition publicly stated: “Near Mosul, five strikes engaged three ISIL tactical units; destroyed three fighting positions, three ISIL-held buildings, two heavy machine guns, two mortar systems, a command and control node, a VBIED factory, a VBIED, an ISIL UAV, a supply cache, and an artillery system; and damaged 24 supply routes and an ISIL-held building.”