US-led Coalition in Iraq & Syria

Civilians in the ruins of Mosul city. (Maranie R. Staab)

Belligerent
US-led Coalition
Country
Iraq
Syria
start date
end date
Airwars Grading
Confirmed
Fair
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CS098

Incident date

July 11, 2015

Location

الرقة‎, Warakat Samra near Ar Raqqah, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.9505639, 39.0094148 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

In the second of three Raqaa incidents for July 11th in which Coalition aircraft allegedly caused non-combatant deaths, a woman and two or three of her children died in an airstrike at the village of Warakat Samra according to reports. Her husband was severely injured in the attack, losing his leg.

Local activist Abu Ibrahim Raqqawi tweeted, for example, that “#Raqqa a women die with 3 of her children and her husband leg was cut Because Airstrikes by Coalition warplanes Yesterday #Syria #ISIS”.

According to the DCHRS, the woman and her two male children were from the village of Samra.

In its civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed this event as ‘not credible, asserting: “July 11, 2015, in Raqqah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2799/CS098 37SEV008785”.

Officials published a location for the event to within 100 metres of where they had remotely assessed the incident.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3 – 4
  • (2–3 children1 woman)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • RBSS activist Abu Ibrahim al Raqqawi reports the death of a woman with three of her children in an alleged coalition strike. Also reporting that her husband lost his leg. 11th July 2015

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.
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV008785
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • July 11, 2015, in Raqqah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2799/CS098 37SEV008785

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The coalition has confirmed numerous airstrikes in the immediate vicinity. For July 10th-11th 2015 it notes: “Near Ar Raqqah, three airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, an ISIL structure and destroyed an ISIL excavator.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3 – 4
  • (2–3 children1 woman)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS099

Incident date

July 11, 2015

Location

الرقة‎, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.9505639, 39.0094148 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

In the last of three reported Raqaa incidents for July 11th, a civilian firefighting team in the city reportedly died in a coalition airstrike.

According to Al Araby, the Coalition “launched eight raids targeting Daesh sites on the outskirts of Raqqa city. These hit the areas of Al Hamrat, Al Sina’a [Industry] and the Faculty of Science near the shrine of Aweys Al Qarni, killing an entire fire crew team and igniting fires at the target locations.”

Raqqa is Being Slaughtered published several images of fires burning from raids on the city  that night.

In its civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed this event as ‘not credible, asserting: “ July 11, 2015, in Raqqah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2802/CS099 37SEV008785”.

Officials published a location for the event to within 100 metres of where they had remotely assessed the incident.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • (4 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • One of several fires caused by alleged coalition airstrikes on Ar Raqaa on July 11 2015 (via Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently)
  • One of several fires caused by alleged coalition airstrikes on Ar Raqaa on July 11 2015 (via Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently)
  • One of several fires caused by alleged coalition airstrikes on Ar Raqaa on July 11 2015 (via Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently)
  • One of several fires caused by alleged coalition airstrikes on Ar Raqaa on July 11 2015 (via Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently)

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
    in Raqqa, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV008785
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • July 11, 2015, in Raqqah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2802/CS099 37SEV008785

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The coalition has confirmed numerous airstrikes in the immediate vicinity. For July 10th-11th 2015 it notes: “Near Ar Raqqah, three airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, an ISIL structure and destroyed an ISIL excavator.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • (4 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS097

Incident date

July 11, 2015

Location

الرقة‎, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.90566, 39.17953 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

A young civilian male named as Issa Al Hmeidan was reportedly killed along with an Islamic State militant in a confirmed US airstrike near Ar Raqaa. According to a number of sources, aircraft targeted a sugar factory which was used as a base by the militants.

In January 2016, CENTCOM admitted civilian casualties had been inflicted in the attack: “During counter-ISIL strikes it was assessed one civilian was killed. A post-strike review revealed a secondary explosion from a vehicle crossing a bridge nearby the intended target; this explosion resulted in one civilian likely killed.”

CENTCOM’s ommission of the deceased mans’ biographical details indicates that credible external sources had not played a major role in the casualty assessment.

In  July 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with coordinates for this event to within an accuracy of a 100 metres box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest city at 35.9505639, 39.0094148

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible / Substantiated
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    Killed by secondary explosion(s)
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV162735
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jan 22, 2016
  • On July 11, 2015, near Ar Raqqah, Syria, during counter-ISIL strikes it was assessed one civilian was killed. A post-strike review revealed a secondary explosion from a vehicle crossing a bridge nearby the intended target; this explosion resulted in one civilian likely killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

Near Ar Raqqah, three airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, an ISIL structure and destroyed an ISIL excavator.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS095

Incident date

July 9, 2015

Location

الحسكة, Al-Hasakah, Syria

Geolocation

36.33444, 40.55722 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

The death of a 12 year old boy, Fares al-Khodour in an alleged Coalition airstrike on al Hassakah on July 9th led to an international outpouring of grief and condemnation of the ongoing civil war in Syria – and of the Coalition’s own involvement.

Fares had fled as a refugee with his family to Beirut, Lebanon where he became a flower seller in busy Hamra Street. Popular with Beirutis for his friendly manner and smart dress, Fares soon earned the nickname among some as Hamra’s Mascot, and he was often photographed smiling with his customers. Many such pictures were published on social media following his death, with at least one candlelit vigil held in Beirut in his memory. According to al Araby, “Once asked about what he wants to be when he grows up, Fares answered: “I want to be a lawyer to defend kids who work and don’t go to school.

Fares had only reportedly returned to his home town in Syria a few days before his death, in order to visit family members. Few details of the alleged strike itself have emerged, with Turkish agency Anatolia News apparently the first to report the death of Fares two days after the event. Heavy coalition airstrikes have been confirmed on al Hassakah on the day in question.

Controversially al Hadath claimed that a young suicide bomber with the nom de guerre of Abu Khattab Al Ansari, who had carried out a suicide attack on Kurdish positions in Raqqa on July 7th, was in fact Fares. The story was roundly condemned as a fake, including by Fares’ surviving brother Youssef.

A family member later indicated that Fares died along with up to six other villagers – including three or four children – when passing fuel trucks were targeted.

In mid 2017, US film maker Noel Paul (who had met Fares in Beirut) began collating evidence about the event. In July 2017, he was told by Coalition officials: “CJTF-OIR is aware of the incident and has completed an assessment, and based on the information available to our assessment team, they have assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike. However, if you are able to provide additional information, such as GPS coordinates for the strike, names and any additional information about the alleged victim we will re-open this report and take another look at it.”

Mr Paul was able to obtain near coordinates for the event from surviving family members – and to place the strike at the tiny village of Abyad, 36°20’04”N 40°33’26”E.

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year – the Coalition again assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “July 9, 2015, in Abyad Village, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2823/CS095 37SFA398222”.

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed. This showed that they had assessed the event for Abyad.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Fares al-Khodour 12 years old male Named by VDC as Fares al Woroud [Fares of the Roses] killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1 – 7
  • (1–5 children)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (11) [ collapse]

  • Pictures of popular flower seller Fares taken in Beirut (via Hamra Street Facebook page)
  • Child suicide bomber 'Abu Khattab Al Ansari', who one newspaper controversially claimed was Fares (via Al Hadath)
  • Image of the 12 year old Fares al-Khodour. [Via:VDC]
  • Image of the 12 year old Fares al-Khodour. [Via:VDC]
  • Image of the 12 year old Fares al-Khodour. [Via:VDC]
  • Image of local Beirutis celebrating Fares' birthday
  • Image of local Beirutis celebrating Fares' birthday
  • An image of 12 year old Fares
  • Image of Fares in Beirut
  • Tributes to the 12 year old rose seller who was adored by locals in Beirut.
  • tweet reporting that the child 'Abu Khattab al Ansari' carried out a suicide bombing operation agaiinst Kurdish fighters in Ras Al Ein in Raqqa, 7th July 2015 [Via: @24News]

Geolocation notes

Location of deaths is placed in a 1.5km radius of  36° 20.067′ N, 40° 33.433′ E based on conversations with surviving family members by Noel Paul.

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

Heavy coalition airstrikes were confirmed for July 9th-10th 2015: “Near Al Hasakah, seven airstrikes struck an ISIL large tactical unit and six ISIL tactical units destroying four ISIL vehicles and six ISIL fighting positions.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1 – 7
  • (1–5 children)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS094

Incident date

July 8, 2015

Location

كفردريان, Kafr Daryan, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

36.19246, 36.7223 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

A US night time airstrike on a vehicle carrying alleged al-Nusra Front personnel also killed two passing civilian motorcyclists. They were later identified by the Syrian Network for Human Rights as two cousins aged 25 and 30. Both worked in the local shoe industry.

In January 2016 CENTCOM confirmed that its airstrike had targeted “a vehicle carrying Khorasan Group Leader Muhsin al-Fadhli.” A US post-strike assessment had then concluded that “two civilians on a motorcycle were likely injured.” CENTCOM’s omission of the deceased mens’ details indicated that credible external sources were not playing a major role in US casualty assessments.

In July 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with coordinates for the event, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

In December 2019, the Coalition declared that it was treating a second alleged civilian harm event in Raqqa on this date (CS093) as a duplicate claim.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Ahmad Mohamad al Tahini 25 years old male resident of Basikba town and worked in the shoe industry. Killed on his way to work. killed
  • Housni Mohammad Kheir al Tahini 30 years old male Ahmad's cousin. Also a resident of Basikba town and worked in the shoe industry. Killed on his way to work. killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • Video showing the aftermath of the alleged coalition raid targeting an al Nusra car. 8th July 2015 [via: Mohammad Mohammad youtube account]
  • An image of the car belonging to Al Nusra front which was allegedly targeted by a coalition raid on 8th July 2015. [Via: SN4HR]

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest village at 36.1757897, 36.6662586

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible / Substantiated
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    No reason given
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    2
  • Stated location
    near Sarmada, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SBA952077
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • Jan 22, 2016
  • On July 8, 2015, near Sarmada, Syria, during a strike against a vehicle carrying Khorasan Group Leader Muhsin al-Fadhli, it was assessed two civilians on a motorcycle were likely injured.

  • Duplicate Reports: The following reports were found to be duplicates of previously assessed Coalition actions. 1. July 8, 2015, in Raqqa, Syria, via Airwars report. The Coalition actions identified in this allegation are duplicates of those in allegation 57 (Credible with one civilian unintentionally wounded, published 22 January 2016). 2801/CS093 37SEV008785

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The US has confirmed it carried out an attack on al Nusra on July 8th 2015: “Near Idlib, Syria, coalition military forces conducted one airstrike against a network of veteran al Qa’eda operatives, sometimes called the “Khorasan Group,” who are known to plot external attacks against the United States and our allies. The airstrike struck a tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS091

Incident date

July 7, 2015

Location

الرقة‎, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.95538, 39.00776 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

In a casualty incident later confirmed by the US, its aircraft targeted a vehicle in the vicinity of Al Shefa Hospital in Raqaa, wounding seven civilians in the process. No fatalities were initially reported, but the hospital was reportedly damaged.

In a Facebook posting marking the event, locals insisted that all of those injured were non-combatants although the US says its target was “ISIL fighters.”

The Syrian Network later reported that one man died of his injuries, named as Ezz al Deen al Nazzal, 27 years old. CENTCOM notes only that “a civilian was injured by a secondary explosion and flying debris from the initial strike,” suggesting that the US was relying only on aerial footage for its assessment.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    7
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Reported civilian casualty of July 7th strike on Raqaa featured in ISIL propaganda video (via Syrian Network archive)

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest city at 35.9505639, 39.0094148

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible / Substantiated
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    Killed by secondary explosion(s)
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV007790
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jan 22, 2016
  • On July 7, 2015, near Ar Raqqah, Syria, during strikes against ISIL fighters, it was assessed that a civilian was injured by a secondary explosion and flying debris from the initial strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The coalition has confirmed a strike for July 7th-8th 2015, noting: “Near Ar Raqqah, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    7
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS090

Incident date

July 5, 2015

Location

تل الجاير, Tall al-Jayer, Al-Hasakah, Syria

Geolocation

36.033926, 41.0987592 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Two civilians were reported killed in a Coalition strike at Hassakah which allegedly hit the Tal Al Jayer Medical Centre.

It was also reported that “a number of women and children” were injured in the attack.

However in July 2017, the Coalition classed the event as non credible on grounds of available evidence of civilian harm: “July 5, 2015, near Al Hasakah, Syria, via Airwars report: After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.”

Given credible reports at the time Airwars continues to assess this event as likely – though is seeking additional clarification from the Coalition.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (7) [ collapse]

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 Al Hasakah, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The Coalition reported a number of strikes for July 4th-5th 2015: “Near Al Hasakah, five airstrikes struck five ISIL tactical units, destroying three ISIL vehicles, and four ISIL fighting positions.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS087

Incident date

July 4, 2015

Location

الرقة‎, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.9505639, 39.0094148 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

The day of July 4th saw multiple allegations of civilian casualties reported in Raqqa. In one of them, an internally displaced family of seven living under a bridge was said to have been crushed to death following a Coalition airstrike.

Buzzfeed cited a surviving close relative in Turkey, who declined to be named publicly but said that “his father and mother were killed along with his two brothers, his sister, and her two children. ‘They have no respect for human rights and international laws that call for protecting civilians,’ he said of the U.S.”

In a study published in October 2016, it was reported: “A Syrian human rights lawyer told Amnesty International that many civilians spent time under bridges in the al-Raqqa area, since they provide, on the one hand, some shelter and, on the other, a place to relax, given limited alternatives in IS-controlled areas. A local activist told Amnesty International that, according to several eyewitnesses, the bombing of al-Farwasiya bridge, north-west of al-Raqqa city, caused several deaths and injuries among civilians only, as well as damage to homes near the bridge. He said that the targeting of the bridges which connected the city with the agricultural areas outside it was a “humanitarian disaster” for farmers and others impacted by the inability to transport their goods.“

The human rights group added: “The assessment of anticipated harm should include the effect that such destruction would have on the ability of the civilian population to access supplies necessary for their survival. The reliance of the civilian population on bridges for obtaining access to food and other essential supplies means that their destruction may have been disproportionate. Further, while the evidence is limited, the apparent civilian deaths and damage to homes as a result of the strike on al-Farwasiya bridge raise questions as to whether adequate precautions were taken in planning and executing this attack.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    7
  • (2 children2 women3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Coalition airstrikes on the town of Ar Raqaa, Syria on July 4 2015 (via US Department of Defense)

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • during a strike against an ISIL High Value Individual, a car and a motorcycle entered the target area after the weapon was released. It is assessed three unidentified civilians were likely killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The Coalition has confirmed carrying out eighteen airstrikes in the vicinity on July 4th-5th 2015: “Near Ar Raqqah, 18 airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, destroying three ISIL vehicles and 16 ISIL bridges.“

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    7
  • (2 children2 women3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (4) [ collapse]