In what has been described as a “massacre” between seven and 55 civilians died, and “dozens” were left injured, following suspected airstrikes on the Al Bagouz water crossing, between Bagouz village and Abu Kamal city, on the northern bank of the Euphrates river. Local sources were conflicted as to who was to blame for the strikes, with some alleging the US-led Coalition were to blame, others blamed Russia and SN4HR even blamed the Syrian regime.
Despite this, nearly all sources blamed Russia. Activists told Smart “Russian-made warplanes” conducted the attacks, Jisr TV referred to “Russian occupation aircraft”. Baqras did not apportion blame, though provided a list of three of the victims.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights attributed blame to the Syrian Regime, and documented “at least 7” killed following “warplane missiles”. Baladi totalled nine killed, as did Smart, which both cited Russia as responsible. Most other sources put the death toll between 17 and 35, Euphrates Post however put the death toll as high as 55.
Sources estimated that between 100 and 150 civilians were killed over the series of strikes on river crossings in that vicinity.
Many of the bodies were unidentified according to VDC, due to burns and decapitation.
Local media reported that it was difficult to rescue civilians trapped in the rubble due to the intensity of the fire.
It is unclear from the sources who was responsible, however the Coalition did confirm strikes in the vicinity of Abu Kamal that day.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
Sources (63) [ collapse]
Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]
Reports of the incident mention the Huweija al Khanafer water crossing (حویجة الخنافر) between the villages Al Bukamal (البوكمال) and Al Baghouz (الباغوز). The coordinates for this crossing are: 34.467345, 40.932505.
US-led Coalition Assessment:
Civilian casualty statements
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
For October 4th – 5th the Coalition reported No strikes near Al Bukamal.