Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISSY016

Incident date

April 24, 2021

Location

بانياس, Off the coast of Baniyas, Tartus, Syria

Geolocation

35.252280, 35.918130 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (other) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (other)

Airwars assessment

At least three young men on an oil tanker were killed in alleged Israeli drone strikes off the coastal city of Baniyas on April 24, 2021 according to local sources.

A tweet from @SAMSyria0 reported that “the body of the young man, Ahmed Amin, from Arwad Island – Tartous, who is a crew member of the targeted ship, has been found. The search is still going on for the victims: the young man, Ahmed Mohammed, from the village of Balgons – Baniyas and the young Muhammad Hussein Yassin – Aleppo.”

A later tweet from @SAMSyria0 adds that “the young Ahmed Wafiq Muhammad, 18 years old, from the village of Balgons – Banias Tartous” has been identified as being killed on the oil tanker.

A Facebook post from Samaher Nasif added that Muhammad Hussein Yassin – Aleppo was also killed on the oil tanker.

According to Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, there was “an explosion in an oil tanker coming from Iran, near the oil refinery in the coastal city of Banias.” At the time of their reporting, “it was not known whether the explosion was caused by a drone attack or naval attack on an oil tank within the tanker. The explosion caused fire and material damage, but no casualties have been reported.” SOHR later added that three Syrian people had died in the “burning of a fuel tank inside the Iranian oil tanker,” adding that “it is not known whether they are among the cadres working within the tanker.”

“The director of the observatory, Rami Abdel-Rahman, told Agence France-Presse, “At least three people were killed, two of them were crew members” in the attack, which caused a fire in one of the tanker’s tanks.”

Multiple sources, including the state-run Syrian Arab News Agency, alleged that the explosion was caused by a drone coming from Lebanese territorial waters but that the identify of the belligerent responsible was unknown.

According to a tweet from @NorsForStudies citing Russia Today, Moscow claimed that the tanker was not targeted and that the fire that broke out was due to negligence; Iran denied that the tanker belonged to them and identified it as being Lebanese; and the Syrian regime identified the tanker as being Iranian and blamed Israel for the strike.

@OQBAH33 attributed a drone strike to Israel and identified the tanker as belonging to Iran. A tweet from @IntelliTimes reported that Israel denied any connection to the attack on the tanker.

France 24 reported that according to Iranian media, the oil tanker was “one of three Iranian tankers that arrived shortly before at the Syrian oil port of Banias.”

CNN included details that “The “Al-Ahlam” channel quoted unidentified sources as saying that the tanker was targeted “with two projectiles, one of which hit the front of it, leaving partial damage, and the other hit its roof and caused more damage.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Ahmed Amin Age unknown male from Arwad Island - Tartous killed
  • Ahmed Wafiq Muhammad 18 years old male from the village of Balgons - Banias Tartous killed
  • Muhammad Hussein Yassin Age unknown male from Aleppo killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Iranian military

Sources (16) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (12) [ collapse]

  • Caption translation: The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has monitored an explosion in an oil tanker coming from Iran, near the oil refinery in the coastal city of Banias. According to sources, the fires are unlikely to be caused by a technical failure. It was not known whether the explosion was caused by a drone attack or naval attack on an oil tank within the tanker. The explosion caused fire and material damage, but no casualties have been reported. It has not been conclusively confirmed whether the attack was carried out by a drone from Lebanese territorial waters, while the identity of the attackers remained unknown.
  • Caption translation: Firefighting teams on Saturday managed to put out fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker near oil downstream in Banias in Tartous. The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources said in a statement that a fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker is believed to be an attack by a drone coming from the direction of Lebanese territorial waters. The Ministry noted that the Firefighting teams were able to extinguish the fire fully. (Images posted by Syrian Arab News Agency)
  • Caption translation: Firefighting teams on Saturday managed to put out fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker near oil downstream in Banias in Tartous. The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources said in a statement that a fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker is believed to be an attack by a drone coming from the direction of Lebanese territorial waters. The Ministry noted that the Firefighting teams were able to extinguish the fire fully. (Images posted by Syrian Arab News Agency)
  • Caption translation: Firefighting teams on Saturday managed to put out fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker near oil downstream in Banias in Tartous. The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources said in a statement that a fire that erupted in one of tanks of oil tanker is believed to be an attack by a drone coming from the direction of Lebanese territorial waters. The Ministry noted that the Firefighting teams were able to extinguish the fire fully. (Images posted by Syrian Arab News Agency)
  • Caption translation: A car bomb exploded a short while ago in Baniyas, and there were reports of a drone attack on an oil tanker from the direction of Lebanese territorial waters. (Images posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • Caption translation: A car bomb exploded a short while ago in Baniyas, and there were reports of a drone attack on an oil tanker from the direction of Lebanese territorial waters. (Images posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • Caption translation: The martyrdom of the young Ahmed Wafiq Muhammad, 18 years old, from the village of Balgons - Banias Tartous, in the death of the attacking of the enemy of the oil tanker. (Image posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • At least three young men working on an oil tanker were killed in alleged Israeli drone strikes on the coastal city of Baniyas on April 24, 2021 according to local sources. (Image posted by Samaher Nasif)
  • Caption translation: The death of the young man, Mahmoud Muhammad Amin, on board the tanker that was hit by a target of an enemy (no official statement confirms that it was an accidental accident) off the mouth of the oil in Banias. (Image posted @SAMSyria0)
  • Caption translated: Pictures from the oil tanker WISDOM carrying the Panama flag, which was involved in an accident yesterday near Baniyas. New reports deny that it was targeted by a drone aircraft and say that the reason was caused by an electrician, but there is no official statement from the Syrian M (Images posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • Caption translated: Pictures from the oil tanker WISDOM carrying the Panama flag, which was involved in an accident yesterday near Baniyas. New reports deny that it was targeted by a drone aircraft and say that the reason was caused by an electrician, but there is no official statement from the Syrian M (Images posted by @SAMSyria0)
  • Caption translated: Pictures from the oil tanker WISDOM carrying the Panama flag, which was involved in an accident yesterday near Baniyas. New reports deny that it was targeted by a drone aircraft and say that the reason was caused by an electrician, but there is no official statement from the Syrian M (Images posted by @SAMSyria0)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention a fire on an oil tanker named Wisdom, off the coast of Baniyas (بانياس). According to research conducted by @obretix, checked and confirmed by our geolocation team, the exact coordinates for this tanker are: 35.252280, 35.918130.

Israeli Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Iranian military

Sources (16) [ collapse]