Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

CS559 RS1949

Incident date

March 8, 2017

Location

البوراشد, Albu Rashed, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.801111, 39.672222 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

In a major incident, up to 24 civilians reportedly died when an aircraft allegedly struck a vehicle just outside Al bu Rashed. Most of those killed were said to be children.

All source blamed the Coalition, except one, which said that this was the work of Russia.

Step News initially reported that the vehicle was IS – suggesting a targeted strike. But it later said “the international coalition committed a massacre last night in targeting cars carrying IDPs from the eastern Raqqa countryside near Mattab Al Bu Rashed killing 18 people most of whom are children.” All other reports also said that civilians only were killed.

The Syrian Observatory reported a slightly lower toll, noting that it “learned that 14 citizens at least were killed by airstrikes of warplanes believed to belong to the International Coalition. They targeted places in al-Matab town in the eastern countryside of al-Raqqah and west of al-Jazrah town at the northern banks of Euphrates River, and within the casualties there are 6 children under the age of 18 and 4 citizen women, and most of the casualties are from the same family, and the death toll is expected to rise because there are some people in critical situation.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the death toll as high as 23 including six children and six women. It also pointed towards the Coalition. A further report by SO4HR put the non-combatant death toll at 24. It said that six members of IS were also killed.

However, Syria News Desk blamed Russia. The source reported: “Activist Mohamed Osman from the countryside of Raqqa told Syria News Sesk that the Russian aviation bombed cars of civilians, mostly families, fleeing from the city of Maskana, who were in the village of Al Bur Rashed on the Raqqa-Aleppo Road, west of Al Tabaqa. Osman added that the raids caused the burning of four civilian carrying displaced people and the complete destruction of two houses”. It put the death toll at 18 displaced people plus 20 more wounded.

 

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (1)

Family members (1)

Family members (1)

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    14 – 24
  • (6–8 children4–6 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–20
  • 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 (21) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Mahmoud Adnan al Suleiman (via Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently)
  • Ahmad Omar al Dahash (via RBSS)

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
    Insufficient evidence of civilian harm
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Albu Rashed, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV602620
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Aug 30, 2018
  • After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find civilians were harmed in this strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For March 7th-8th the Coalition stated: “Near Ar Raqqah, four strikes destroyed three fighting positions, two tunnels, a vehicle repair facility, and a tactical vehicle.”

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    14 – 24
  • (6–8 children4–6 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–20
  • 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 (21) [ collapse]