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
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CS1882a

Incident date

January 4, 2019

Location

near Ash Sha'fa, Deir Ezzor, Syria

Geolocation

34.56493, 40.93594 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 an event previously not tracked by Airwars, the Coalition later confirmed the injury of one civilian in an artillery strike near Ash Sha’fa, Syria. This was later confirmed by the Pentagon to be a US-only event.

In its June 2019 civilian casualty report, the Coalition noted: “Coalition artillery conducted a strike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally wounded due to their proximity to the strike.”

The Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

In May 2020, the Pentagon in its annual report to Congress conceded this as a US-only action.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Table of US-only civilian harm events in Iraq and Syria for 2019, declared by the Pentagon to Congress in May 2020.

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
    Other
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Ash Sha'fa, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU776265
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 27, 2019
  • Jan. 4, 2019, near Ash Sha'fa, Syria, via self-report. Coalition artillery conducted a strike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally wounded due to their proximity to the strike.

United States
  • May 6, 2020
  • As of March 1, 2020, CJTF-OIR assessed that 11 reports of civilian casualties during 2019 were credible, with approximately 22 civilians killed and approximately 13 civilians injured as a result of U.S. military operations. The following table contains additional details about each instance during 2019 that was assessed to have resulted in civilian casualties. 4-Jan-19 Ash Sha' fa, Syria Ground action 1 civilian injured 0 civilians killed

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

Between Dec. 30, 2018 and Jan. 12, 2019, CJTF-OIR conducted 575 strikes consisting of 1,147 engagements in
Syria, and conducted 13 strikes consisting of 19 engagements in Iraq.

In Syria, 575 strikes engaged 485 ISIS tactical units, and destroyed 308 staging areas, 220 fighting positions, 105 mortar, rocket and artillery systems, 57 supply routes, 50 manufacturing facilities for improvised explosive device and vehicle borne improvised explosive device, 31 command and control nodes, 26 vehicles, 19 weapons caches, 18 mortar launching sites, 18 petroleum oil and lubricant storage facilities, 11 heavy and light weapon systems, eight reservoirs and tankers for petroleum oil and lubricants, eight pieces of heavy equipment, seven vehicle borne improvised explosive devices, six tunnels and caves, four buildings, two unmanned aircraft systems, one weapons facility, one logistics hub and one fuel storage

Summary

  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS493

Incident date

February 14, 2017

Location

Ar Raqqah, Syria

Airwars assessment

In an alleged civilian casualty event not previously tracked by Airwars, the Coalition announced in June 2017 that it had assessed a reported event near Raqqa as Non Credible, based on an assessment of video evidence.

According to the June report “Feb. 14, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via social media report: After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that no civilians were harmed in this strike.”

The Coalition provided the following coordinates to Airwars to help identify the location of the allegation: 37SEV 00730 78734. This showed the alleged event to be south east of the Al Firdous mosque in central Raqqa.

Local media reported that the Coalition struck the “governorate building in the centre of Raqqa”, which had reportedly been turned into a prison by ISIS.

According to the Step News Agency, “the fate of the detainees in the building is still unknown, stressing the killing of a large number of members of the organization in the bombing that targeted the building.”

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • Translation: Flight # The International Alliance is targeting the Furusiya area and the perimeter of brigade 17 north of the city of Al-Rigga with several air raids and reports of casualties.
  • Translation: # Dasha is shooting bullets to separate the civilians who gathered in the province to check on the fate of their sons who are being held in prison after being destroyed
  • Translation: The destruction of most of the governorate building in the city of Al-Rigga as a result of being targeted by the aircraft of the Alliance # international several raids just before
  • Translation: The governorate building belonging to the Da'ash organization, which was destroyed by the International Coalition and has a large number of prisoners

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
    Other
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV0073078734
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 2, 2017
  • After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that no civilians were harmed in this strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For February 13th-14th the Coalition stated that “Near Ar Raqqah, 15 strikes engaged nine ISIS tactical units; destroyed 13 fighting positions, a tactical vehicle, and an ISIS headquarters; damaged three supply routes, and a bridge; and suppressed an ISIS tactical unit.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS515

Incident date

February 20, 2017

Location

Ar Raqqah, Syria

Airwars assessment

In an incident not previously tracked by Airwars, the Coalition said in June 2017 that an airstrike near Raqqa had not caused civilian harm – despite claims on social media.

According to the report, “14. Feb. 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via social media report: After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in this geographic area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.”

The strike was assessed as non credible based on the claim that “no Coalition strikes were conducted on that day in the geographic area of the report of civilian casualties.” However, the Coalition reported multiple strikes in Raqqa that day.

No additional details are presently known.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ 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
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Apr 30, 2017
  • After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in this geographic area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For February 20th-21st, the Coalition reported: “Near Ar Raqqah, seven strikes engaged four ISIS tactical units; destroyed three fighting positions, a VBIED, a garage, an IED and a weapons facility; and damaged a bridge.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI712

Incident date

May 14, 2017

Location

near Mosul, Iraq, Iraq

Airwars assessment

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.

Incident Code

CI739

Incident date

May 30, 2017

Location

حي الزنجيلي, Mosul, Zanjili, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.3545, 43.108694 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

In an incident not previously tracked by Airwars, on September 1st 2017 the Coalition said it had concluded an assessment on social media claims of civilian harm “near Mosul, Iraq”. According to the Coalition report, “11. May 30, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via social media report: The report contains insufficient information of the time, location and details to assess its credibility.”

The Coalition shared the location of this assessed strike with Airwars. The location was stated as the Zanjili neighbourhood in Mosul. This matches the location of a separate strike reported by Airwars (I561).

No additional details are presently known.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ 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 information on the time and location
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF3049224538
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Sep 1, 2017
  • The report contained insufficient information of the time, location and details to assess its credibility.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For May 29th-30th the Coalition publicly reported: “Near Mosul, four strikes engaged four ISIS tactical units and destroyed 34 vehicles, seven fighting positions, three VBIEDs, two mortar systems, two heavy machine guns, a medium machine gun, and a supply cache and damaged an ISIS-held building, an ISIS supply route and a fighting position.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS944

Incident date

June 8, 2017

Location

الرقة, near Raqqah, Syria, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.942996, 38.963162 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 1m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 1m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

In an incident not previously tracked by Airwars, on September 29th 2017 the Coalition said it had concluded an assessment on claims of civilian harm “near Raqqa, Syria” via an NGO report. According to the Coalition report, “102. June 8, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via NGO report: After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties.“

The Coalition shared the military coordinates with Airwars: 37SDV9667777626. This corresponds with Jarah in Raqqa.

No additional information is presently known.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ 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
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SDV9667777626
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Sep 29, 2017
  • 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

US-led Coalition

For June 7th-8th: “Near Raqqah, 22 strikes engaged 16 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 12 fighting positions, three vehicles, two ISIS staging areas, an ISIS excavator, an ISIS weapons cache, and an ISIS training camp.” It also added that “On June 7, near Raqqah, Syria, one strike destroyed six fighting positions and suppressed an ISIS tactical unit.” And that “On June 7, near Raqqah, Syria, one strike destroyed an ISIS minefield.”

For June 8th-9th, the Coalition reported: “Near Raqqah, nine strikes engaged eight ISIS tactical units and destroyed six fighting positions, three vehicles and a mortar system."

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS972

Incident date

June 12, 2017

Location

near Raqqah, Syria, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.946002, 38.981467 Note: The accuracy of this location is to level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.

Incident Code

CS1614

Incident date

October 9, 2017

Location

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

On January 30th 2018, RBSS reported that “The bodies of Abdul Hakim al-A’bka and Abdulkhaliq al-A’bka were taken out of the rubble after they had been shelled about four months ago by the international coalition aircraft on the town of Raqqa.”

The men were reportedly from one family.

In Amnesty and Airwars’s joint April 2019 report “War in Raqqa: Rhetoric versus Reality” it was uncovered by Amnesty through field research that the victims died in an airstrike which killed 26 civilians on the 8th October 2017. The victims have therefore been removed from this incident and reside under S1411a.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (1)

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • 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]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Abdul khaliq Al-Abaka, a victim of alleged US-led Coalition strikes on the city of Raqqah, 9th October 2017. (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 information on the time and location
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 28, 2018
  • The report contains insufficient information of the time, location and details to assess its credibility

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For October 9th-10th the Coalition publicly reported no strikes in Raqqa.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
  • 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]