Russian Military in Syria

A Russian combat aircraft at Khmeimim airbase in Syria being prepared for action. (Russian Ministry of Defence)

Belligerent
Russian military
Country
Syria
start date
end date
Airwars Grading
Discounted
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

RS392

Incident date

January 15, 2016

Location

ماير, Mayer, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.38711, 37.0245 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

One to two civilians were allegedly killed and several others injured in alleged Russian airstrikes on Mayer, according to local sources.

In a news roundup, Shaam News said two non-combatants died in a raid by Russian warplanes, while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that “a person was killed when warplanes believed to be Russian bombed areas in the town of Mayer in the northern countryside of Aleppo.

The Violations Documentation Center named one victim as Ahmad Mohammad Qasem. However the pro-regime Aleppo Today described him as a combatant: “The killing today of a field officers in the Free Syrian Army Ahmed Mohammed Qasim, nicknamed ‘Haji Meyer’ along with a number of militants, after targeting by Russian fighter jets of their headquarters in Mayer.” All 4 Syria also said he was a military commander.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 2
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

Russia has not reported any strikes between 11-15 January.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 2
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS306

Incident date

December 23, 2015

Location

أريحا, Ariha, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

35.81374, 36.60964 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

One adult male, Mahmoud Sonae also known as Abo Mehyo of Ariha, was reported killed in an alleged Russian airstrike, according to the Violations Documentation Center.

Mr Sonae was caught in a major airstrike on Idlib on December 20th, and appears to have died of his injuries three days later.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • An image provided by the VDC possibly of the burial of Mahmoud Sonae. (via, VDC)
  • Another image provided by the VDC. (via, VDC)

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

For December 18th-23rd, Russia reported that “In the course of five days, on December 18-23, aircraft of the Aerospace Forces in the Syrian Arab Republic have performed 302 combat sorties engaging 1093 objects in the Aleppo, Idlib, Latakia, Homs and Deir ez-Zor provinces.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS303

Incident date

December 22, 2015

Location

تفتناز, Taftanaz, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

35.99832, 36.78579 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

One adult male civilian, Mudar Abdulhameed Ezz, was listed killed in an alleged Russian airstrike on Taftanaz, according to the Violations Documentation Center. In fact Mr Ezz lived in Taftanez but died in a December 20th airstrike on Idlib, with his body recovered from the ruins of the courthouse two days later.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown
  • Unknown position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

Unknown

For December 18th-23rd, Russia reported that “In the course of five days, on December 18-23, aircraft of the Aerospace Forces in the Syrian Arab Republic have performed 302 combat sorties engaging 1093 objects in the Aleppo, Idlib, Latakia, Homs and Deir ez-Zor provinces.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS302

Incident date

December 22, 2015

Location

إدلب, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

35.93062, 36.63393 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

Two civilians are listed as killed in an alleged Russian airstrike on Idlib on December 22nd, according to the Violations Documentation Center. However both victims are also listed as having died in a strike on Idlib on December 20th. There are no additional reports of airstrikes on Idlib for December 22nd.

 

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 2
  • (2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

For December 18th-23rd, Russia reported that “In the course of five days, on December 18-23, aircraft of the Aerospace Forces in the Syrian Arab Republic have performed 302 combat sorties engaging 1093 objects in the Aleppo, Idlib, Latakia, Homs and Deir ez-Zor provinces.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 2
  • (2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS270

Incident date

December 12, 2015

Location

سقبا, Sakba, Damascus, Syria

Geolocation

33.51926, 36.38376 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

Between four and five non-combatants were killed in airstrikes on Sakba, according to multiple sources.

The Shaam News Network reported that two civilians died in two alleged Russian strikes on the town. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported unspecified losses also due to alleged Russian attacks.

However, footage of the attack from two separate sources appears to show Syrian Air Force MiG23s.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Mohammad Husni al-Memari Age unknown male named by VDC killed
  • Issam Rada Age unknown named by VDC killed
  • Redwan Mohammad Ali al-Senn Age unknown named by VDC killed
  • Majed al-Sheikh Khaleel Age unknown named by VDC killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4 – 5
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    20–50
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces

Sources (22) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (15) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Injured civilians carried from the wreckage in Sakba. (via, Yusuf al Bustani tweet)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Mohammad Husni al Memari, also known as Abu Sakhr. 12th December 2015. (via, SNN)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Majed al Sheikh, 12th December 2015. (via, SNN)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Issam Rada, 12th December 2015. (via, SNN)
  • Ambulances rush into the vicinity, moments after the raids fell. (via, Abu al Fida’a Eastern Ghouta)
  • The aftermath of the airstrike in Sakba. (via, Saquaba Revolution)
  • The exact moment the airstrike hit Sakba. (via, Abu al Fida’a Eastern Ghouta)
  • Warplanes in the skies about Sakba. (via. Saquaba Revolution)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A civilian casualty following airstrikes on Sakba. (via, Saquaba Revolution)
  • Chaos following the airstrikes on Sakbah. (via, The White Helmets)
  • A video catching the exact moment in which the airstrike hit Sakba. (via, Syrian Revolution Coordinators Union)
  • More footage of the moment the airstrike struck. (via, Anas al Khloe, with a Syrian Rebels Gathering logo on screen)
  • The impact of the airstrike. (via, Jobar News)
  • The aftermath of the airstrike in Sakba. (via, Radiio al Kuhl)
  • Destroyed infrastructure following airstrikes in Sakba. (via, Kafr Batna Coordinators Facebook)

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

Russia is not known to have publicly released any information relating to its airstrikes in Syria between December 9th and December 14th 2015.

Syrian Regime Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Syrian Regime Armed Forces
  • Syrian Regime Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    4 – 5
  • (1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    20–50
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces

Sources (22) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS113

Incident date

November 2, 2015

Location

سكيك, Sakik, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

35.428645, 36.770339 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

An initial report by the Violations Documentation Center named one adult male as a civilian medical worker who killed in an alleged Russian airstrike but did not specify the location.

However, a later listing by the VDC identified him both as a paramedic and as a non-civilian, killed “during clashes with the regime’s army forces“.

According to the Union of Hama Revolutionaries, the victim age 32 with a wife and children, was a manager of an ambulance service in southern and eastern Hama. It said he was from the village of al Mashraf in eastern Hama, and that he died from injuries sustained two days previously when Russian warplanes struck one of the military facilities he was affiliated with

The Syrian Coordination in Eastern Hama said he died from injuries following a Russian bombardment of a medical facility.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Abo al- Reem Age unknown male

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • The aftermath of the strike: Fire in Al - Diri Textile Factory in Aleppo, Western Aleppo
  • The aftermath of the strike: Fire in Al - Diri Textile Factory in Aleppo, Western Aleppo
  • The aftermath of the strike: Fire in Al - Diri Textile Factory in Aleppo, Western Aleppo
  • The aftermath of the strike: Fire in Al - Diri Textile Factory in Aleppo, Western Aleppo

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

In its report for military actions on October 31st-November 2nd 2015, the Kremlin has confirmed carrying out strikes in Hama governorate: “Near Kafr Nabudah settlement (Hama province), a Su-25 attack aircraft performed a strike against militants’ fortified area with two armored vehicles and two off-road automobile vehicles equipped with ZU-23 AA systems. Direct hit of an air bomb caused destruction of an ammunition depot. As a result of detonation, armored and off-road vehicles burnt down.“

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS090

Incident date

October 29, 2015

Location

دوما, Douma, Damascus, Syria

Geolocation

33.5714804, 36.4033699 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

At least 70 people died and as many as 550 were injured in what was initially reported as a Russian airstrike on the marketplace in Douma. However subsequent reports indicated the specific attack was most likely the work of Assad regime aircraft. Part of the confusion lay in the fact that Russian Air Force aircraft had also reportedly carried out strikes on the city that day.

As AP noted: “There were conflicting reports about the attack in Douma. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Local Co-ordination Committees said government forces fired more than 11 missiles at a market. The Observatory said the attack killed 57 people, while the LCC said at least 40 died… The Syrian National Council, the main Western-backed opposition group in exile, blamed Russian air strikes for the “massacre” in Douma, saying 55 civilians were killed. It said it was the second deadly attack in the past 24 hours after Russian air strikes hit the main Douma hospital.

According to Medecins Sans Frontiers, “At least 70 people have been killed and 550 injured in an air strike on a marketplace in the Douma neighbourhood near Damascus, Syria. As the nearest makeshift hospital had been bombed the previous day, medical workers struggled to cope with the influx of injured people. MSF fears the intensification of bombing that has been seen in northern and central Syria over the course of October could become even more horrific if it spreads to besieged areas around Damascus, where almost a million people are trapped with no way to escape, few medical facilities, and no options for medical evacuations of seriously wounded. The devastation caused by the initial air strike on the market was exacerbated by further shelling on the rescue teams who were attending to the wounded. Two hundred and fifty patients required surgery, and a further 300 patients have been treated for non-surgical wounds. The multi-trauma wounds are described by medics as being worse than anything they have seen before.”

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • Civilians reported injured
    550
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Russia also carried out airstrikes at Douma on October 28th, leading to initial confusion on who was respobnisble for the reported deaths of 70 civilians {Shaam News Network)
  • Photos showing Russian warplanes that are still roaming the skies of the besieged Eastern Ghouta and carrying out raids on its cities and towns. (via SNN)

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

The Russian MoD issued no report for the period October 28th-30th 2015.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • Civilians reported injured
    550
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    Russian Armed Forces

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Incident Code

RS070

Incident date

October 23, 2015

Location

تلبيسة, Talbisah, Homs, Syria

Geolocation

34.840505, 36.72922 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

Eighteen civilians were killed in heavy airstrikes on Talbiseh, all from the Aloush and Swais families. Nine children were among the dead following at least three air raids. Graphic footage shows bombs being dropped in the centre of the town, followed by desperate rescue operations.

Opinion was divided on whether the attacks were by Russian or Assad regime aircraft. However, footage of an aircraft dropping bombs on the town that day appears to show an Su-22, an aircraft type not used by Russia in Syria at the time of the incident.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (8)

  • Mustafa Adnan Aloush Child male killed
  • Khaled Elwan Aloush Child male killed
  • Adnan Aloush Child male killed
  • Sajide Adnan Aloush Child female killed
  • Khadeje Adnan Aloush Adult female killed
  • Meriam Abdul Razak Aloush Adult female killed
  • Meriam Abdul Kader Aloush Adult female killed
  • Adnan Hasan Aloush Adult male killed

Family members (6)

  • Masoud Saeid Swais Adult male killed
  • Fadi Murhaf Masoud Swais Child male killed
  • Omar Usama Masoud Swais Child male killed
  • Jamal Hmadi Swais Child male killed
  • Shahid Masoud Swais Child female killed
  • Khaled Masoud Swais Child male killed
  • Abdul Kareem al-Daher al-Zuair Adult male killed
  • Nour Ziad al-Dhaik Adult female killed
  • Shaaban Jnaid al-Khalaf Adult male killed
  • Kamal Qasem Erfan Adult male killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    18
  • (9 children5 women5 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (6) [ collapse]

  • Photo of a tweet by @abohafsalhamoe: translation: The death of an entire family made up of 8 people following Russian raids on Talbissa in northern Homs countryside as Friday prayer was cancelled.
  • Photo of @houla-homs. Translation: 6 members from one family /the family of the lawyer Adnan Alloush/ were all martyred in Talbissa, northern Homs countryside 23/10/2015
  • Title: Talbissa 23/10/2015 The martyr the baby Fadi Morhaf Al Soueiss.
  • Title: Talbissa 23/10/2015 very important - the fall of a vacuum missiles near the photographer caused a massacre.
  • Title: the moment warplanes bombed the town of Talbissa in Homs countryside.

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

There is no published Russian Defence Ministry record for October 23rd-24th 2015.

Syrian Regime Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Syrian Regime Armed Forces
  • Syrian Regime Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    18
  • (9 children5 women5 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces

Sources (15) [ collapse]