Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

CI655

Incident date

April 20, 2017

Location

الموصل: غرب/الجانب الأيمن, Mosul, Al-Tanak, Zanjili, Farouk, Rifai, Old City and other neighborhoods, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.336843, 43.117979 Note: The accuracy of this location is to level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Local sources reported that airstrikes of the Coalition and the Iraqi airforce on several neighbourhoods in Old Mosul, as well as artillery shelling, led to the deaths of 18 civilians. It was also reported that more than 41 civilians were injured.

Correspondences Team and Al Rafidain reported 17 dead and more than 30 wounded in Al-Tanak, Zanjili, Farouk and Rifai neighbourhoods in West Mosul.

Amnesty field investigators later interviewed survivors of the al Tanak event: “Amnesty International interviewed witnesses to an attack on a civilian house on Street 20 in al-Tenak neighbourhood on either 19 or 20 April 2017. One of the witnesses was “Mohamed”, the house owner.

He had escaped from the area the night before. He learned on the telephone the following day that IS had taken over the house he had abandoned and that, as a result, it had become the target of air strikes. The air strikes destroyed the house containing the IS fighters. It also destroyed an adjoining house with a family inside. The houses were struck three times; two strikes occurred in quick succession and a third was carried out a short time later while rescue efforts were ongoing.

Amnesty International also spoke to two other witnesses, one of whom “Hamza” described going to the scene: “We were still in al-Tenak neighbourhood. The two homes were adjoining each other. After the second bombing, my son Mohamed went to the scene and tried to pull the bodies out of the rubble. One of the occupants, Mohamed Diab, was only buried from the waist down. My son Mohamed put his arms under Mohamed Diab’s armpits and tried to pull him free. They succeeded and Mohamed Diab survived. He was the only survivor from the house. While my son and the other civil defence lads were trying to dig out the others the plane came around again and struck again [for a third time]. It killed one of the [civil defence] lads.”

The first two strikes killed the IS fighters but they also killed the entire family living next door. The third strike killed one of the first responders. Amnesty International is concerned that the choice of munitions in this attack resulted in the destruction of a house full of civilians, as well as the decision to launch a third strike, once the houses had already been destroyed. Based upon available information, there are reasons to suspect that the first two strikes may have been disproportionate. The third strike raises the possibility that rescuers and the injured may have been deliberately targeted.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    17 – 18
  • Civilians reported injured
    30–41
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    US-led Coalition, Iraq government forces

Sources (8) [ collapse]

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For April 19th-20th: “Near Mosul, seven strikes engaged four ISIS tactical units and destroyed five VBIEDs, five front-end loaders, four mortar systems, a medium machine gun and a VBIED factory.”

Iraq government forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Iraq government forces
  • Iraq government forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    17 – 18
  • Civilians reported injured
    30–41
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    US-led Coalition, Iraq government forces

Sources (8) [ collapse]