A reported Coalition, or possibly Russian, airstrike which hit a Syrian Red Crescent hospital in Idlib injured up to a dozen civilians. The Coalition later denied involvement, though a unilateral US action remained possible.
The intended target of the dawn strike appeared to be the militant gropup Fatah al Sham at a base at the former Carlton Hotel. But numerous sources reported extensive damage to a Red Crescent hospital in the city. According to Shaam News “The bombing also caused the injury of nine members of the Red Crescent who were at the center during the raids, where the bombardment caused the interruption of the Centre’s work fully with the service.”
In a video it issued of the event, Step News interviewed a rescue worker at the scene: “At 3am we woke up to the noise of an air raid. We at the civil defence and the fire brigade headed to the target location and saw the Red Crescent centre/carlton hit with a missile that went through from the roof to the first floor. God was merciful as it didn’t reach at the way to the bottom where there were 30 members of the Red Crescent. They would’ve been hit. There are a few injured… we put the fires out and we took the injured to the hospitals.”
Four members of the local civil defence were also reportedly injured while attending the scene.
Multiple sources named Mamoun Kharbout, the head of the Syrian Red Crescent branch in Idlib, as one of the injured.
Most sources blamed the Coalition, although the Syrian Network said Russia may also have been responsible. In April the Coalition stated: “Feb. 1, 2017, near Idlib, Syria, via social media report: No Coalition strikes were conducted on that day in the geographic area of the reported civilian casualties.”
The incident occured around dawn.
The victims were named as:
Sources (29) [ collapse]
from sources (18) [ collapse]
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
Apr 1, 2017
No Coalition strikes were conducted on that day in the geographic area of the reported civilian casualties.
Original strike reports
For January 31st-February 1st and February 1st-2nd the Coalition noted no strikes in the vicinity. However unilateral US strikes against Fatah al Sham are no longer reported by CJTFOIR.