Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

CS1476 RS2434

Incident date

September 12, 2017

Location

Khisham town, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

35.3020098, 40.2914143 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Local reports documented four civilians killed in airstrikes on Khisham town,13 kilometres east of Deir Ghaza, eastern Deir Ezzor.

Euphrates Post referred to “warplanes” and alleged that they targeted “the house of Awad al-Azar in the town of Khisham, opposite the divider, killing four people and wounding many civilians yesterday evening”, though they did not specify a culprit.

Russia was suspected responsible by Marsad al Hassaka and Qasioun News, both sources referring to Russia’s use of “cluster bombs” dropped in an extensive raid over the villages of Hatla, Mazloum, Khisham, Tabit, and Akeidat, “resulting in severe material damage and fires that are still burning”. Homes of civilians were reported destroyed.

Other sources alleged the US-led Coalition was to blame. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights “believed the warplanes to be International Coalition”, as did Al Watan News.

Asharq Asouri also alleged that the Coalition hit a school that housed displaced persons.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • 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, Russian Armed Forces

Sources (17) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Khisham (خشام), for which the coordinates are: 35.3020098,40.2914143. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Khisham, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFV174073
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 28, 2018
  • 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

US-led Coalition

For September 11th – 12th the Coalition reported: “Near Dayr Az Zawr, seven strikes engaged four ISIS tactical units and destroyed two vehicles, a tactical vehicle, a VBIED, and a fighting position.“ It later reported, "On Sept. 11, near Dayr Az Zawr, one strike destroyed four ISIS fighting positions"
For September 12th-13th: “Near Dayr Az Zawr, five strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed two fighting positions, two VBIEDs, a VBIED facility and a logistics node.”

United Kingdom
  • English
    /
    Original

‘Monday 11 September – Tornados destroyed two sniper positions in Raqqa, and attacked a Daesh-held compound and terrorists on a motorcycle near Dayr az Zawr…A flight of Royal Air Force Tornados supported the Syrian Democratic Forces fighting in Raqqa on Monday 11 September, when Paveway IV guided bombs were used to destroy two sniper positions. A second Tornado flight patrolled north-east of Dayr az Zawr, where they attacked a group of terrorists in a compound with a Paveway IV. Survivors of the attack then attempted to move to another position on a motorcycle, but were successfully engaged with a Brimstone missile.’

United Kingdom
  • English
    /
    Original

‘Tuesday 12 September – a Reaper successfully guided a coalition airstrike onto a truck-bomb workshop near Dayr az Zawr…The following day [Sept 12th], a Reaper remotely piloted aircraft operated in the same area near Dayr az Zawr, and provided precision targeting that enabled a coalition air strike to destroy a truck-bomb workshop and a vehicle that was being prepared there.’

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Russian Armed Forces
  • Russian Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • 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, Russian Armed Forces

Sources (17) [ collapse]