US Forces in Yemen

Mabkhout Ali al Ameri with his 18-month old son Mohammed, shortly after a botched US raid on al Ghayil in January 2017 had killed at least 20 villagers, including Mohammed's mother Fatim Saleh Mohsen. © Iona Craig

Belligerent
US Forces
Country
Yemen
start date
end date
Civilian Harm Status
Belligerent Assessment
Declassified Documents
Strike Status
Strike Type

Incident Code

USYEMTr108

Incident date

October 25, 2017

Location

عيشمة, Ayshamah, Al Bayda, Yemen

Geolocation

14.564228951, 44.951198936 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

A US airstrike killed seven ISIS militants “traveling in a truck in a rural area of al-Bayda” governorate on October 25th 2017, a US Central Command spokesperson told CNN News, one of two declared strikes against the group in the area that day.

This confirmed local reports that US drone strikes had killed at least six militants between Yakla and Dhi Kalb, both in Qayfa area of Bayda, in the evening of October 25th.  There were no known reports of civilian harm.

Sources, including @demolinari, suggested that one of the two strikes targeted the vicinity of Ayshamah, between the Yakla and Dhi Kalb areas, while another targeted the Baqarat area, which lies to the west of Ayshamah. Since CENTCOM told CNN that a second strike (USYEMTr109) took place “about five miles to the west” of this event, reports regarding the Ayshamah area have been associated by Airwars with this strike. It remains possible that any one of these reports instead referred to the strike detailed in USYEMTr109.

While CENTCOM briefed that seven were killed in the strike, local sources told Salmashad and Al-Masdar Online that six alleged ISIS militants were killed between Yakla and Dhi Kalb, in the Ayshamah area, while travelling in a car.

Reports of the overall death toll from the two strikes varied. Multiple sources, including AFP, suggested that a total of 13 militants were killed in the two strikes, though US Central Command told CNN that nine had died. At the lower end, VOA reported that “at least seven” had been killed, while one Twitter user, @intelyse_arabia, suggested that six had died in the course of both strikes.

Though most indicated that the targets were ISIS-affiliated, some claimed that AQAP militants had been killed. According to Al-Hudud and some local-language Twitter users, one strike killed three AQAP leaders and four “others” in a car, though it was unclear which specific strike this referred to.

The strikes came less than ten days after US forces targeted ISIS militants in Yemen for the first time, in strikes (USYEMTr105 and USYEMTr106) on two training camps that cumulatively killed over 50 fighters, according to the US.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known targets
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), ISIS - Yemen
  • Belligerents reported killed
    6–7

Sources (34) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Ayshamah (عيشمة), for which the generic coordinates are: 14.564228951, 44.951198936. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

US Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US Forces

The US military conducted two airstrikes targeting ISIS in Yemen on Wednesday, killing nine ISIS militants, according to US Central Command, which oversees US troops in the region.
The two strikes hit ISIS vehicles and took place in al Bayda Governorate in Yemen.
This is only the second time the US has targeted ISIS in Yemen with a series of strikes, suggesting US planners are increasingly concerned about the terror group's presence there.
Military strikes there have historically targeted al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
"Ongoing US counter-terrorism operations against ISIS in the ungoverned spaces of Yemen continued today with two strikes, which killed nine terrorists," said US Army Maj. Josh Jacques, a Central Command spokesperson.
The first strike successfully targeted seven armed ISIS fighters traveling in a truck in a rural area of al Bayda. The second strike killed two armed ISIS fighters in a parked truck located about five miles to the west of the first site, Jacques said.
In the last 10 days, US forces have successfully targeted and removed 60 ISIS terrorists from the battlefield in Yemen.
A series of strikes on two ISIS terror training camps in al Bayda on October 16, killed more than 50 terrorists, disrupting the organization's attempts to train new fighters.
ISIS used the camps to train aspiring militants to conduct terror attacks, conducting courses in assault tactics and the use of AK-47s, machine guns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers.
Yemen has been wracked by warfare and has become a proxy battleground for Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Yemen's minority Houthis, who are Shiite, rebelled against the Sunni-led government, backed by Saudi Arabia.
That spurred the Saudi-led coalition to launch airstrikes in support of Yemen's government against rebel targets in Yemen in March of 2015.
The United Nations has called the conflict a "humanitarian catastrophe."
Government forces and the Saudi-led coalition also have fought against the al Qaeda branch in Yemen and ISIS, both of which are anti-government Sunni terror groups.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known targets
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), ISIS - Yemen
  • Belligerents reported killed
    6–7

Sources (34) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr183

Incident date

November 24–25, 2018

Location

ذي كالب, Dhi Kalb, Bayda, Yemen

Geolocation

14.555183, 44.882332 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

At least five alleged AQAP militants, including at least one leadership figure, were reportedly killed by a US drone strike in Dhi Kalb, in the Quraishiah area of Bayda governorate, overnight from November 24th-25th 2018.  There were no known associated reports of civilian harm.

Most sources reported that six militants had been killed, though differed over the precise circumstances. A local source told Al-Masdar Online that the strike targeted an “al-Qaeda” site in the area, killing six including two leaders, named as Abu Muhammad Al-Dhahab, and Abu Al-Qa’qa. Other sources, including Al-Khabar Now, Associated Press, Reuters, and Xinhua, also indicated that six had been killed including two leadership figures, in a strike against an AQAP “hideout”, “gathering” or “site”.

Others, including Al-Arabi and The National, instead reported that, according to local and provincial sources, those targeted were killed while travelling through the area in a car.

Though most gave an overall figure of six fatalities, a local official reportedly told AFP that five, including one commander, were killed, according to The National. The original AFP article could not be found by Airwars. An anonymous provincial source also told the National that six militants and two commanders had died.

Dr Elisabeth Kendall, an academic, indicated that pro-AQAP feeds only named two “brothers” as martyred: Abu Mohammed Al-Dhahab, and Mus’ab Al-Ibbi, and suggested that this could mean that the remainder were tribal fighters not directly affiliated with AQAP.

Most indicated that the strike took place on November 25th, with the first public claims appearing early afternoon on that date. Al-Masdar Online instead indicated a time late on November 24th: “According to a local source who reported to Al-Masdar Online, an air strike launched by an American plane yesterday evening, Saturday, targeted an Al-Qaeda site in the Dhilb area in Quraishiya, killing the two leaders, Abu Muhammad al-Dahab, Abu al-Qa`qa, and four of their companions.”

As such, Airwars has assessed that the strike took place at some time overnight. Local residents told Xinhua that a drone was loitering over the area for some hours prior to the strike.

In January 2019, US Central Command asserted that it conducted no actions in November 2018: “No strikes were conducted in Yemen in October, November, and December.” This may not however preclude a CIA or Saudi-led Coalition action.

The incident occured during the night.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5–8

Sources (35) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Dhi Kalib (ذي كالب ) for which the generic coordinates are: 14.555183, 44.882332. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US Forces

CENTCOM counterterrorism strikes in Yemen 2018 rollup



TAMPA, Fla. - U.S. Central Command conducted 36 total air strikes in Yemen

in 2018, targeting al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and ISIS-Yemen.



CENTCOM conducted 10 air strikes in January targeting both AQAP and

ISIS-Yemen, six air strikes against AQAP in February, seven air strikes

against AQAP in March and four airstrikes against AQAP in April.



CENTCOM conducted two air strikes in May, two air strikes in June, two air

strikes in July, one air strike in August, and two air strikes in September,

all targeting AQAP terrorists.



No strikes were conducted in Yemen in October, November, and December.



The air strikes took place in Abyan, al Bayda, Hadramawt, Shabwah and Zamakh

governorates.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5–8

Sources (35) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr190

Incident date

March 25, 2019

Location

معسكر الحازمية السلفي, Salafiya Al Hazmiya Camp, Al Bayda, Yemen

Geolocation

14.166667, 45.831111 Note: The accuracy of this location is to District level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

District

Airwars assessment

A number of US drone strikes reportedly targeted pro-government fighters in Hazmiya district in Bayda governorate, on March 25th 2019, killing at least five and injuring eight others.  A few sources instead indicated that a UAE drone had conducted the strikes, and one suggested that a Houthi ballistic missile was responsible for reported casualties.  Though some claimed that a strike had targeted “citizens” at a funeral, there were no known specific reports of civilian harm.

Local language news and social media sources, including Yemen Shabab and Mareb Press, indicated that a drone (which most alleged to be American) conducted several strikes against positions of the Hazmiyah Front, one of which destroyed a weapons store. Al Masirah reported that strikes took place at dawn and noon.

Those killed in the strikes were named by Aden Gad and others as Shamakh Mohammed Salem Al-Farawi, Ahmed Mansour Al-Shanhouz, Nasser Saleh Al-Farawi, Abdul-Ghani Al-Farawi, and Dabaj Al-Salmani. One source, Alwfaq News, suggested that, according to a local source, a strike took place at 2 PM, killing seven, but did not provide names.

According to these sources, the same or a separate drone reportedly then conducted a strike during the funeral of the victims of the initial raids. Some media sources, including Mareb Press and Aden Gad, described this strike as targeting mourning “citizens”, potentially indicating that they were civilians, though no sources reported that the strike resulted in casualties. According to Alwfaq News, a second strike on the same camp, which had been evacuated, resulted in no casualties. The strikes allegedly came days after pro-government forces in Hazmiyah had repulsed an attack from Houthi militias.

A Reuters correspondent, @MohammedGhobari, tweeted that a US drone strike had targeted a weapons store, but that the five reported fatalities instead resulted from a Houthi rocket strike nearby.  Yemeni journalist @m_alsallaly, tweeted that Emirati drones had conducted all of the alleged strikes, and suggested that 90% of those targeted had previously rejected Emirati offers to establish friendly militias.

A US Central Command spokesperson later told New America that two strikes in Bayda governorate were carried out on March 25th. In a press release, CENTCOM further suggested that all strikes in March 2019 targeted AQAP militants. AQAP fighters have been previously reported to have fought beside, and integrated into, pro-government forces.

Though there were no other known reported US strikes on March 25th, given the conflicted reports of responsibility for some or all of the strikes and casualties, this event has been assessed as contested. While it is possible that one or both of the declared US strikes referred to one or more of the mentioned actions within this event; two unique incident logs have been created (USYEMTr191, USYEMTr192) to reflect those declared US strikes.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attackers
    US Forces, Saudi-led Coalition, Yemeni Air Force
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5–7
  • Belligerents reported injured
    8

Sources (30) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (9) [ collapse]

  • Sources variously alleged that the US, the UAE, and Houthi forces were responsible for one or more of the strikes (Yemen Shabab, March 25th 2019)
  • A drone, which some alleged to be American, reportedly targeted pro-government forces in Hazmiyah, Bayda (Aden Gad, March 25th 2019)
  • Five government soldiers were reportedly killed in the course of strikes in Hazmiyah, Bayda, though responsibility for their deaths was variously attributed to the US, the UAE, and Houthi forces (Almarsd Post, March 25th 2019)

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a strike on the Salafiya Al Hazmiya Camp (معسكر الحازمية السلفي), allegedly located within the As Suma’a (الصومعة) district, of Al Bayda (البيضاء) governorate. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for As Suma’a are: 14.166667, 45.831111.

  • Reports of the incident mention a strike on the Salafiya Hazmiya Camp (معسكر الحازمية السلفي), allegedly located within the As Suma’a (الصومعة) district, of Al Bayda (البيضاء) governorate.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US Forces

Our Yemen strikes data has been updated for individualized dates after CENTCOM responded to an inquiry on the eight strikes in 2019. Strikes were as follows: 1/1, 1/21, 3/25, 3/25, 3/26, 3/28, 3/29, and 3/29. All but 1/1 in al Bayda'

Saudi-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Yemeni Air Force Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Yemeni Air Force
  • Yemeni Air Force position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attackers
    US Forces, Saudi-led Coalition, Yemeni Air Force
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5–7
  • Belligerents reported injured
    8

Sources (30) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr036

Incident date

March 4–5, 2017

Location

وادي يشبم, Wadi Yashbum, Shabwa, Yemen

Geolocation

14.304795, 46.934570 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Several social media sources reported that US airstrikes targeted alleged AQAP sites in Wadi Yashbum, Saeed district of Shabwa, overnight from March 4th to March 5th.  There were no known reports of civilian harm. One Twitter source, writing at 2am, suggested that eight airstrikes took place in the area.

The Yashbum Valley area was subject to several alleged US strikes in early March 2017, including a reported troop landing. Several actions reportedly targeted the home of Saad Atef, a regional AQAP leader.

This reported event took place amid a dramatic intensification of US operations against AQAP in March 2017.  A US military intelligence source told NBC News that dozens of strikes beginning March 2nd were “part of ‘new directives’ to aggressively pursue the Dhahab and Qayfa clans”.

The incident occured during the night.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Wadi Yashbum (وادي يشبم), for which the coordinates are: 14.304795, 46.934570. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US Forces

Defense Department officials detected and tracked multiple missile launches out of North Korea today, four of which landed in the Sea of Japan, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis told reporters this morning.

Explosive ordnance disposal technicians assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5, Platoon 501, prepare for an EOD mine-countermeasure exercise with members of a South Korean navy underwater dive team off the coast of Jinhae, South Korea, as part of exercise Foal Eagle 2017, March 3, 2017. Foal Eagle is an annual, bilateral training exercise designed to enhance the readiness of U.S. and South Korean forces and their ability to work together during a crisis. Navy Combat Camera photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Alfred A. Coffield
Explosive ordnance disposal technicians assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5, Platoon 501, prepare for an EOD mine-countermeasure exercise with members of a South Korean navy underwater dive team off the coast of Jinhae, South Korea, as part of exercise Foal Eagle 2017, March 3, 2017. Foal Eagle is an annual, bilateral training exercise designed to enhance the readiness of U.S. and South Korean forces and their ability to work together during a crisis. Navy Combat Camera photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Alfred A. Coffield
Davis said the four medium-range ballistic missiles were launched from the northwest corner of North Korea, traveled over the Korean Peninsula and out into the sea, totaling about 1,000 kilometers in distance, or more than 620 miles.

Missiles Land Off Japan’s Coast

The missiles landed in the vicinity of Akita Prefecture off the coast of Japan near that nation’s exclusive economic zone, he said. The EEZ is defined as a sea zone prescribed by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea over which a state has special rights regarding the exploration and use of marine resources, including energy production from water and wind.

“The North American Aerospace Defense Command detected that the missiles from North Korea did not pose a threat to North America,” Davis said. “This [North Korean missile launch] is very similar in terms of the path and the distance of the three missiles that flew into Japan’s EEZ in September 2016.”

He added, “These launches, which coincide with the start of our annual defensive exercise, Foal Eagle, with the Republic of Korea’s military, are consistent with North Korea’s long history of provocative behavior, often timed to military exercises that we do with our ally,”

The United States stands with its allies “in the face of this very serious threat and are taking steps to enhance our ability to defend against North Korea’s ballistic missiles, such as the deployment of a [Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense] battery to South Korea, which will happen as soon as feasible,” Davis said.

U.S. Strikes AQAP in Yemen

Also overnight, the United States made an airstrike on Yemen’s Abyan Governorate against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula fighters, bringing to 40 the strikes there in the past five nights, Davis said.

Since the first airstrike against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen on Feb. 28, “We will continue to target [al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula] militants and facilities to disrupt the organization’s plot and protect American lives,” the captain said.

The strikes have been coordinated with and done in full partnership with the government of Yemen with the goal of denying al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists’ freedom of movement within traditional safe havens, Davis emphasized.

The captain also confirmed the deaths of three al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula operatives in March 2 and 3 airstrikes in Yemen.

Usayd al Adani, whom Davis described as a longtime al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula explosives expert and facilitator who served as the organization’s emir, was killed in a U.S. airstrike March 2 within the Abyan Governorate. Killed with him was former Naval Air Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detainee Yasir al Silmi.

Killed March 3 was al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula fighter and communications intermediary for Adani, Harithah al Waqri, Davis said.

“[Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula] has taken advantage of ungoverned spaces in Yemen to plot, direct and inspire terror attacks against the United States and our allies,” he said. “And we will continue to work with the government of Yemen to defeat [al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula].

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr074

Incident date

April 16, 2017

Location

مودية, Northern outskirts of Mudiyah, Abyan, Yemen

Geolocation

13.929915, 46.079702 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A US naval strike reportedly targeted an alleged AQAP site on the northern outskirts of Mudiyah town, Abyan governorate, on the evening of April 16th 2017. There were no reported associated civilian or militant casualties.

According to Aden al-Ghad, a missile exploded in Al Qassarat area, according to locals, but left no casualties. This was reportedly one of two US naval strikes in Mudiyah on the evening of April 16th, the other striking to the west of the town.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention two strikes on the outskirts of Mudiyah (مودية) town. One struck the Al Qassarat (الكسارات) area in the north, while another struck in the west, allegedly in the vicinity of a medical clinic. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Mudiyah town are: 13.929915, 46.079702

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr177-C

Incident date

August 1, 2018

Location

الروضة, Al Rawda, Marib, Yemen

Geolocation

15.448882, 45.345554 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A US drone strike reportedly targeted a house in the Al Rawda area of Marib governorate on August 1st 2018, killing four and wounding others.

One source, The Yemen, indicating that those killed were civilians: “Today, Wednesday, local sources said that four civilians were killed and others wounded, following a US air strike on a drone that targeted them in the Rawdah neighborhood, south of Ma’rib Governorate. The sources pointed out that a drone strike hit a house in the neighborhood of Rawda, south of the city of Marib, killing four people and wounding others.”

Other sources suggested that the house was inhabited by AQAP militants.

The reports bore a resemblance to those of another alleged strike in the same area on July 22nd (USYEMTr174-C), and may possibly reflect late reporting of that earlier event.

On August 30th 2018, US Central Command stated that “six counterterrorism air strikes” against AQAP had been conducted since May 16th 2018, in “Shabwah, Hadramawt and Al-Bayda governorates”. The declared strikes did not include an August 1st strike; it is possible that this event constituted an undeclared CIA strike.

In its annual civilian casualty report to Congress issued in April 2019, the US Department of Defense stated that it had assessed “no credible reports of civilian casualties resulting from US military actions in Yemen during 2018″.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4
  • Belligerents reported injured
    2

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a house being struck in the Al Rawda (الروضة) area, south of Mar’ib (مأرب) city. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Al Rawda are: 15.448882, 45.345554.

  • Reports of the incident mention a house being struck in the Al Rawda (الروضة) area, south of Mar’ib (مأرب) city.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces 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 reason given
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None

Civilian casualty statements

US Forces
  • Apr 29, 2019
  • C. U.S. military action in Yemen against al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and ISIS During 2018, U.S. forces deployed to Yemen continued to work towards disrupting and degrading the terrorist threat posed by AQAP and ISIS. U.S. forces conducted 36 airstrikes against AQAP and ISIS operatives and facilities in Yemen and supported United Arab Emirates and Yemen-led efforts to clear AQAP from Shabwah Governorate. DoD has no credible reports of civilian casualties resulting from U.S. military actions in Yemen during 2018.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4
  • Belligerents reported injured
    2

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr223

Incident date

April 25, 2020

Location

بين الخدراء والنبيق, Al Khudra and Al Nabeeq, Shabwa, Yemen

Geolocation

14.87082, 45.75198 Note: The accuracy of this location is to District level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

District

Airwars assessment

One or more US drone strikes reportedly killed at least six alleged AQAP militants between the towns of Al Khudra and Al Nabeeq, in the Beihan district of Shabwa governorate, on the afternoon of April 25th 2020. There were no known associated reports of civilian harm.

Yemeni tribal and security sources told Associated Press, on April 27th, that two US drone strikes in Beihan had killed at least six AQAP militants “in recent days”. Marib Today reported that three US strikes had been conducted in the area on that afternoon, and were preceded by the presence of US aircraft throughout the morning. However many sources mentioned only one strike.

A single social media post by @no_itsmyturn indicated that a drone strike by an unnamed belligerent had targeted Houthi positions in Beihan on the 25th, though it was not clear if this was the same event.

According to Associated Press, both the CIA and the US military declined to comment on the reported US strikes. US Central Command told Airwars that no US military strikes were conducted in Yemen during April 2020. It is, however, possible that an undeclared strike was conducted by the CIA, or as part of a clandestine US military action.

The incident occured in the afternoon.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected targets
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    6

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • Though Twitter user @no_itsmyturn gave this source as evidence for a claim that strikes had targeted Houthi positions in Beihan, the source did not specifically identify the target (@no_itsmyturn, April 25th 2020)

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the area between Al Khudra (الخدراء) and Al Nabeeq (النبيق), allegedly in the Beihan (بيحان‎) district of Shabwa (شبوة) governorate. Our research finds evidence of a clinic called Al Wahdah as Sihhiyah al Khadra (الوحدة الصحية الخدراء) and a hill called Jabal Khudra (جبل الخدراء), suggesting that Al Khudra is within the area, however, we find no mention of Al Nabeeq in the vicinity. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Jabal Khudra are: 14.87082, 45.75198.

  • Reports of the incident mention the area between Al Khudra (الخدراء) and Al Nabeeq (النبيق), allegedly in the Beihan (بيحان‎) district of Shabwa (شبوة) governorate.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

  • Our research finds evidence of a clinic called Al Wahdah as Sihhiyah al Khadra (الوحدة الصحية الخدراء) and a hill called Jabal Khudra (جبل الخدراء), suggesting that Al Khudra is within their area, however, we find no mention of Al Nabeeq in the vicinity.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US Forces

According to CENTCOM, there were no US military strikes during April 2020 in Yemen.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected targets
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    6

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMBi002

Incident date

August 24, 2021

Location

Yemen

Airwars assessment

Two alleged members of Al Qaeda were killed in US airstrikes in Yemen sometime before August 24, 2021.

According to a Facebook post from Mushir Al Mashrai, Al-Qaeda organization in Yemen mourned Rashid Al-Ghazali and his brother Abu Asim, who said that they were killed in an American raid.

A tweet from @GhalebM0nz1i7 reported that the death of the brothers was announced on Al-Malahim website, affiliated with Al-Qaeda terrorist organization in Yemen, and attributed their deaths to airstrikes from US warplanes.

While the death of the brothers was announced on August 24th, it is unclear when the strikes took place and/or when the brothers died.

In an email to Airwars on November 18th, the US military denied carrying out any recent attacks in Yemen, noting that “CENTCOM conducted its last counterterror strike in Yemen on June 24, 2019. CENTCOM has not conducted any new counterterror strikes in Yemen since.”

This does not however preclude actions by the CIA – which is known to have conducted at least three strikes in Yemen since June 2019.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has announced the deaths of "Rashid al-Ghazali" and "Abu Asim" who were allegedly "martyred by the American Crusaders." (Image posted by @IntelTweet)

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (5) [ collapse]