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
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CS1398

Incident date

August 22, 2017

Location

السخاني, Sukhani neighbourhood, near Hani mosque, Ar Raqqah, Syria

Geolocation

35.9522, 39.0164 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

In a major casualty incident, as many as between 33 and 60 civilians, including many women and children, died following US-led Coalition airstrikes on Al-Sakhani, Raqqa. Almost a year later the US-led alliance accepted responsibility for 33 deaths.

According to Baladi, the strike was near the Al-Hani mosque, while Qasioun reported that one of the strikes hit a building in which civilians were sheltering.

Local media reported that the airstrike occurred on the 20th August, however recent up to date Amnesty field research conducted has reported the strike to have occurred on the 22nd at 7pm.

Local media reported that the majority of those killed were from the same family. A Tweet by @AhmadShblii identified eight of the victims as displaced persons from Palmyra.

All sources obtained held the US-led Coalition responsible for the alleged massacre. In addition to the civilians that died, “dozens” were suspected injured.

Albosleh and @LaSyrianNews put the death toll as high as 60.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which also blamed the Coalition, the 42 civilians it said were killed in the strikes included 19 children. This report may have conflated another, however.

A June 2018 report by Amnesty stated that on 20 August 2017 at 7pm, “Coalition forces simultaneously bombed the two neighbouring houses in which the family were staying.” These air strikes reportedly killed 33 Badran family members and other civilians, mostly women and children. A large number of civilians killed in the airstrike were identified in the report.

In its July 2018 civilian casualty report, the Coalition accepted responsibility for the event: “August 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via Amnesty International report. During a strike on a reported Daesh position near a residential area allegedly caused civilian casualties. Thirty three civilians were unintentionally killed.”

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

In the Amnesty and Airwars’s joint April 2019 report “War in Raqqa: Rhetoric versus Reality” it was reported that “Thirty-three members of the Badran Family and neighbours, most of them women and children, were killed in the third and most devastating set of four separate air strikes which killed a total of 39 family members and 10 neighbours as they fled from neighbourhood to neighbourhood in search of safety.”

In addition to this, Rasha, a survivor of the strike told Amnesty in a testimony that “Only I, my husband and his brother and cousin survived. In the morning we found Tulip’s body; our baby was dead. We buried her near there, by a tree. I don’t understand why they bombed us. Didn’t the surveillance planes see that we were civilian families?”

The incident occured at 7:00 pm local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (33)

  • Shamsa al Badran Bint Mustafa 40 years old female killed
  • Sahar Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 17 years old female Mohammad's daughter killed
  • Saja Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 15 years old male Mohammad's daughter killed
  • Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 13 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Hamza Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 11 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Daham Mohammad Ahmad al Badran 4 years old male Mohammad's son killed
  • Saddiqa al Badran Bint Mustafa 38 years old female Shamsa’s sister, Ismael's wife killed
  • Mundher Ismail al Saaid 12 years old male Ismael's and Shamsa's son, twin of Sidra killed
  • Sidra Ismail al Saaid 12 years old female twin of Mundher killed
  • Aseel Ismail al Saaid 6 years old female Ismael's and Shamsa's daughter
  • Sumaya al Badran bint Mustafa 45 years old female widow, no children killed
  • Abta al Badran bint Mustafa 50 years old female widow killed
  • Qays Mohammad al Sahu 24 years old male Abta's son killed
  • Mays Mohammad al Sahu 18 years old female Abta's daughter killed
  • Khud al Badran bint Mustafa 48 years old female divorced killed
  • Rana Hsein al-Shammari 18 years old female Khud's daughter killed
  • Thuraya al Badran bint Mustafa 55 years old female killed
  • Ibrahim early 30s years old male Thuraya's son killed
  • Madonna mid-late 20s years old female Ibrahim's wife killed
  • Thuraya's nephew 1 Child male killed
  • Thuraya's nephew 2 Child male killed
  • Thuraya's niece Child female killed
  • Mohammad Khalil 30 years old male killed
  • Ali al Badran ibn Mustafa 44 years old male no children killed
  • Ibrahim Fahd Ibn Wahab al-Khadr 70 years old male killed
  • Khadija al Sahu 60 years old female Ibrahim's wife killed
  • Tulip Fahd bint AbdulWahab Abbude 1 years old female Rasha's and Abbude's daughter killed
  • Osama Ibrahim Fahd 32 years old male Abbude's brother killed
  • Mohamed Imbrahim Fahd 28 years old male Abbude's brother killed
  • Souad 50 years old female Iraqi national, wife of local man killed
  • Abu Riad 60s years old male Souad's husband killed
  • Maha mid 20s years old female daughter of Souad and Abu Riad killed
  • Amina al Raqim 60s years old female unmarried, was with Souad and Abu Riad killed

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    33 – 60
  • (12–19 children12–13 women3–8 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    12–24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (41) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (31) [ collapse]

  • Khalil Ibrahim Albadran, killed in an alleged Coalition strike near Al-Hini Mosque, (via RBSS)
  • ' Türkçe · Kurdî (Kurmancî) · العربية · English (UK) · Español Gizlilik · Koşullar · Reklamlar · Ad Choices · Çerezler · Diğer Facebook © 2017 Syrian Network for Human Rights - الشبكة السورية لحقوق الإنسان 6 saat · The women Thuraya, Sumayya, Abtta, Khood, Seddiqa, and Shamsa Mustafa al Daham, killed along with 11 members of their family in International Coalition warplanes missiles fired on al Sakhani alley north of Raqqa city, Aug 20.' (via SN4HR)
  • Shahid Abu Aboudabrahim Al Wahab, killed in an alleged Coalition strike on Raqqa (via Sharqiya Voice)
  • Mustafa Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Ibrahim Khalil Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Qais Mohammed Al-Khader (via RBSS)
  • Sama Ibrahim Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Mohammed Ibrahim Abdulwahab Al-Fahed (via RBSS)
  • Ali Ibrahim Al-Badran (via RBSS)
  • Photo of the aftermath of the air strike (via RWB)
  • Tulip Badran (via Amnesty)
  • Aftermath of the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Members of Al-Badran family killed in the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Satellite images of the destroyed house in the air strike (via Amnesty)
  • Abta, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Ahmad, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Ali al Badran ibn Mustapha, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Daham, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Hamza, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Khadja, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Madonna Daham, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Mays, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Osama, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Qays, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Saddiqa, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Sahar, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Saja, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Shamsa, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Sidra, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Thuraya, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)
  • Tulip Tuteh, killed in a mass civilian casualty airstrike by alleged Coalition planes on August 22nd 2017. (via Amnesty)

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Al Sakhani (السخاني) neighbourhood of Raqqah, near the Al Hani (الحني) mosque, for which the coordinates are: 35.951373, 39.016984. Following field research by Amnesty International, the incident was found credible by the US-led Coalition, who provided the following MGRS coordinate (accurate to 100m): 37SEV014786.

  • Before strike. (via Amnesty)

  • After strike. (via Amnesty)

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 deaths conceded
    33
  • Stated location
    near Raqqah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SEV014786
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 26, 2018
  • August 20, 2017, near Raqqah, Syria, via Amnesty International report. During a strike on a reported Daesh position near a residential area allegedly caused civilian casualties. Thirty three civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For August 19th-20th: “Near Raqqah, five strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions.” It additionally added that “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, 36 strikes engaged 22 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 29 fighting positions and seven command and control nodes.” That “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, six strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed five fighting positions, an IED, and a command and control node.” And that “On Aug. 19, near Raqqah, Syria, one strike suppressed an ISIS tactical unit.”

France
  • English
    /
    Original

For Aug 16-22, France report 5 strikes in Iraq and 2 in Syria. Task Force Wagram conducted 60 artillery missions.

United Kingdom
  • English
    /
    Original

‘Sunday 20 August – Tornados and Typhoons hit a target in Raqqa, a group of terrorists and vehicles in eastern Syria, and five Daesh positions around Tal Afar…On Sunday 20 August, Typhoons bombed a further Daesh position in Raqqa. In eastern Syria, Tornados targeted a group of terrorists deployed near the border with Iraq – two Paveways hit their trucks and killed several of the extremists.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    33 – 60
  • (12–19 children12–13 women3–8 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    12–24
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (41) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI222

Incident date

April 9, 2016

Location

الموصل‎, Mosul, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.35311, 43.15221 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

The Coalition conducted several night raids on telephone exchanges and reportedly the Babylon Bank in Mosul, which resulted in the deaths of at least six and as many as 67 civilians.

In November 2016 the US initially admitted to killing one civilian in the attack, noting that “during a strike against an ISIL tactical unit, it is assessed that one civilian was killed after entering the target area after the aircraft released its weapon”.

The Coalition appear to have reassessed this incident and in May 2019 additionally confirmed the deaths of five civilians and the injuriing of nine others in an attack on a Daesh communications centre.

Their monthly civilian casualty report noted “Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike on a Daesh communication center in Mosul, Iraq. Regrettably, five civilians were unintentionally killed and nine others unintentionally wounded due to their proximity to the strike. (Not previously reported)”

Other casualty counts varied wildly. According to NINA “children, women and the elderly” were among many civilian fatalities after five telephone exchanges were hit: “The bombing also caused the martyrdom of 67 civilians, mostly women and children and wounded 38 other civilians, as well as causing significant damage to homes near the PBX exchange sites and shops. Our sources said that ambulances were operating from last night until today, transporting bombing victims.”

Yaqen put the death toll at six and said phone exchanges on both sides of the city were hit in what appeared to be a coordinated effort to cut internal Dash communications.

NRN News reported no civilian deaths from the telephone exchange strikes, saying Daesh had instructed locals to leave a week earlier because of the risk of possible strikes.

However NRN said two non-combatants did die when a branch of the bank of Babylon was bombed in eastern Mosul: “Our correspondent said that the bombing killed three gunmen organizing from Daash and two civilians guards of the Bank, as well as serious material damage to the building, which also includes the Office of the Chamber of Commerce.”

In May 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    6 – 67
  • Civilians reported injured
    9–38
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • A photo reveals a destroyed telephone exchange building that was hit in coordinated strikes on Mosul on April 9th (via NRN News)

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest city at 36.34585235, 43.09857692

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
    Entered target area just prior to or after munition released, Other
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    6
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    9
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF342247
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • May 31, 2019
  • Nov 9, 2016
  • April 9, 2016, near Mosul, Iraq, during a strike against an ISIL tactical unit, it is assessed that one civilian was killed after entering the target area after the aircraft released its weapon.

  • Apr. 9, 2016, near Mosul, Iraq, via Airwars report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike on a Daesh communication center in Mosul, Iraq. Regrettably, five civilians were unintentionally killed and nine others unintentionally wounded due to their proximity to the strike. (Not previously reported)

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The Coalition reports that for April 9th-10th 2016 “Near Mosul, eight strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and five ISIL communication facilities and destroyed two ISIL vehicles and an ISIL boat.“

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    6 – 67
  • Civilians reported injured
    9–38
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS1094

Incident date

June 26, 2017

Location

الميادين, Al Mayadin, Deir ez-Zor, Syria

Geolocation

35.01979, 40.45123 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Between 42 and 100 civilians who were being detained in an ISIL prison were reportedly killed in alleged Coalition airstrikes on an ISIL base in Al Mayadeen, local sources reported. The Coalition later conceded having killed eight civilians.

According to a number of reports, the strikes also allegedly killed between 15 to 20 ISIL members, 11 non-civilian prisoners (such as militia fighters), four prison guards, five women that the terror group took as sex slaves in addition to one civilian male who was killed as a result of being in the vicinity of the strikes.

Euphrates Post reported that one of the buildings hit was the former house of Ahmed al Hamash, which had been turned into a so called ISIL ‘agricultural centre’, while another was the house of Abdul Hamid Idris al Mazal.

Mazal was said to be a leader within Al Nusra Front until ISIL executed him in 2014, commandeered his three-story property and converted it into the ISIL prison where the prisoners were said to be killed.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) also reported that a commercial bank was hit and was “completely destroyed,” but was the only source to mention a bank.

Images from various buildings showed extensive damage, however they could not be distinguished.

According to an NPR interview with Rami Abdulrahman, the director of the SOHR, a senior ISIL leader was killed in the strike, but he was not identified.

A later SOHR report stated that the strikes targeted a senior ISIL leader from a Gulf country, but said he was evacuated with his wife before the strike.

Euphrates Post identified the nearby victim of the strike who is said to have been killed near his shop, which is near to the ISIL base.

DeirEzzor24 identified one of the casualties as Madin al Mutlaq and reported that he was a member of ISIL’s police force and carried out dozens of arrests in the area.

Nine of the 11 sources who reported the incident alleged that the Coalition was responsible.

In October 2017, the Coalition stated it had unintentionally killed eight civilians in a strike on an ISIS detention facility Al Mayadin: “During a Coalition strike that destroyed an ISIS detention facility, it was assessed that eight civilians were unintentionally killed.”

In July 2019 the Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Fares Ahmed Mahmoud al Hamran Adult male also known as Abu Ahmed killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    42 – 70
  • (5 women)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (9) [ collapse]

  • 'Fares Ahmed Mahmoud Alhamran "Abu Ahmed" killed by the bombing of the city of Mayadeen yesterday near his shop near the former State Security headquarters', Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. ( via, Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)
  • The extent of damage to civilian homes in the aftermath of the Coalition airstrike on Al Mayadin, Deir Ezzor, 26th June 2017. (via Euphrates Post)

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest city at 35.016667, 40.444167

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 deaths conceded
    8
  • Stated location
    near Al Mayadin, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU324762
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Oct 27, 2017
  • June 26, 2017, near Al Mayadin, Syria, via media report. During a Coalition strike that destroyed an ISIS detention facility, it was assessed that eight civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For June 26th-27th, the Coalition reported: “Near Dawr Az Zawr, seven strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed three vehicles, a tactical vehicle, two bunkers, two pump jacks, a front-end loader, an IED factory, an ISIS financial facility, and an ISIS headquarters.” It additionally reported that “On June 26, near Dayr Az Zawr, one strike destroyed an ISIS factory.”

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    42 – 70
  • (5 women)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI070

Incident date

June 3, 2015

Location

الحويجة, Hawijah, industrial district, Kirkuk, Iraq

Geolocation

35.3208131, 43.7832295 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 Coalition airstrike on an Islamic State depot levelled a significant number of buildings, and at least 70 civilians and a large number of militants were reportedly killed. A large supply of TNT explosive detonated after the IED-making facility was struck. Bas News described the attack as one of the worst mass casualty incidents in Iraq since the 2003 invasion.

Following the publication of a major investigation by Dutch media NOS and NRC in October 2019, which claimed that the Netherlands had been responsible for the incident, the Dutch Ministry of Defence finally took public responsibility for the airstrike on November 4th, 2019.

The head of Kirkuk’s Arab Council, Mohammed Khalil al-Jubouri, at the time placed the number of dead and injured civilians at 150. The Iraqi Revolution site claimed that 70 civilians had died, with more than 100 injured. Rudaw also reported 70 killed, describing 26 children and 22 women among the dead.

Local sheikh Abdallah al-Jubouri told Al-Araby news agency at the time that “several international coalition airstrikes hit the district. The losses were made worse by there being no ambulances or other means to rescue victims.” He added that “This is the single worse airstrike that has targeted civilians in al-Hawija; eight months ago we were getting hit by Iraqi army warplanes but that has stopped. The international coalition has committed a civilian massacre today and Islamic State and its weapons are the reason.“

Eyewitness Hassan Mahmoud al-Jubbouri told Reuters that the area looked as if it had been hit by a nuclear bomb, and described pulling the bodies of a family of six from the rubble. Only one victim has so far been named – Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi – described as the owner of a car maintenance shop in the district.

Bizarrely, in the immediate wake of the strike, a Coalition official told Reuters: “Since we started airstrikes in August last year in Iraq, I have difficulty thinking of any civilian casualties in Iraq, and for thousands of sorties that is good. One is clearly too many.“

Among as many as 100 militants also reported killed was Islamic State’s local police chief, named as Jassim Shukur. “The [Coalition] warplanes also bombarded two other sub-districts around Hawija and many other ISIS militants who were with the police chief were killed by the bombardment,” Iraqi official Sarhad Qadir told Rudaw.

In a later January 2016 report, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) noted that US officials had confirmed carrying out the Hawijah attack though went on to state: “Pictures and videos have emerged in media and online showing an area purporting to be the blast site that has been almost completely flattened. UNAMI/OHCHR was not able to verify the authenticity of the photos or the videos, nor the number of civilian casualties.”

In October 2019, Dutch media NOS and NRC published a major investigation in which they alleged that Dutch F-16s had carried out the attack. This also revealed that chief Coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan had confirmed to reporters in December 2018 that at least 70 civilians had in fact died – though this had not been officially reported out by the CJTF civilian casualty cell. This statement was later withdrawn by the Coalition on December 5th 2019, asserting that they were no longer able to determine the exact amount of civilian casualties in the incident.

However, past and present officials did confirm to NRC that 70 civilian deaths had been privately counted for Hawijah by the Coalition for at least 18 months – suggesting that the Dutch government may have pressured the Coalition to withdraw its initial estimate.

On November 4th 2019, the Dutch Ministry of Defence took public responsibility for the airstrike. This stirred a public and parliamentary debate in the Netherlands on transparency and accountability regarding civilian casualties as a result of Dutch airstrikes. As a result, Dutch Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld promised significant transparency improvements and said she was looking into possibilities for voluntary compensation for victims.

On November 28th 2019, Dutch newspaper NRC wrote that according to locals, the estimate of 70 civilian deaths was an absolute minimum number. Civilians stated that “almost everyone in Hawijah lost neighbours or family members [in the incident]”.

NRC stated that the Dutch Socialist Party, after seeking contact with the Iraqi Communist Party (ICP), had local Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud collect the names of victims. With volunteers, Abu Louis went from house to house in the affected areas to find eyewitnesses of the event in 2015. According to Abu Louis, there were “62 people killed, including 36 children and 13 women, 822 wounded, 70 destroyed houses, 375 cars total loss”. 405 of the injured were registered in the hospital. The other 417 did not have any permanent injuries.

Abu Louis’ own nephew Homan (15 years old) was killed after debris hit him in the stomach.

On December 3rd, 2019, the Dutch parliament passed a motion which called on the government “to make every effort, where possible in cooperation with NGOs, UN and local authorities, to conduct further investigations on civilian victims as a result of Dutch actions in Hawija”.

In February 2020, the Dutch Ministry of Defence released previously classified documents about the airstrike, including Defensie’s own investigation after several FOIA requests by both Airwars and Dutch media. The documents revealed that the Dutch red cardholder, the military official with a potential veto over airstrikes, was aware before the strike that the risk to civilians could be created than that the Collateral Damage Estimate (CDE) indicated.

Related documents to the case by the Public’s Prosecutors office (OM) were also released, revealing that the OM’s investigation into Hawijah only started nine months after the event and that it was not until 15 months later that the pilots were heard for the first time.

In March 2020, Airwars reported, based on information provided by a senior (non-Dutch) military official, that at least one other Coalition country had refused to conduct the Hawijah strike, implying that the potential risk to civilians was expected to be too high.

A month later, the US government released its investigation into the airstrike after a judicial procedure following an unanswered FOIA request by NRC and NOS. The documents revealed that US officials were aware that the 2015 Dutch airstrike on Hawijah posed a threat to civilians. Four CIA informants had warned the Coalition about civilians living near the ISIS IED factory, as reported by NOS. Furthermore, the Coalition amended its targeting development process. In the future, the Coalition would have to do further in-depth investigation into possible secondary explosions in densely populated areas.

On April 29th, 2020, human rights lawyer Liesbeth Zegveld filed a claim in name of 47 Iraqi’s with the Dutch Ministry of Defence. Some of her clients were severely injured in the airstrike and/or suffered material losses, others lost their relatives. Among her clients are the relatives of Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin, who was working as a security guard in a car showroom on an industrial estate, a 100 metres from the ISIS IED factory, during the night of June 2nd to June 3rd. A few days after the airstrike, Moeshin died of his injuries.

On May 14th, 2020, a fourth Dutch parliamentary debate on the case took place. The Dutch Red Card Holder had not received information about the CIA warnings and the American doubts on the risks for civilians before giving a green light to the airstrike. During the debate, Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld stated that there should be better arrangements on information sharing between the Coalition and the Netherlands.

The incident occured after midnight.

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi Adult male Owner of the car maintenance shop in the area killed
  • Sa’diya Ramadan Jadou 19 years old female wife of Ali Assem Ahmad, died after being hit in the neck by glass of a window that exploded in the incident killed
  • Abdulmalek Qader 5 years old male son of Alaa Qader, blinded by one eye injured
  • Wife of Alaa Qader Adult female first name unknown, injury in back injured
  • Homan 15 years old male nephew of Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud, hit in the stomach by debris killed
  • Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin 24 years old male worked as a night security guard killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (13) [ collapse]

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi (via deleted Facebook page)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An infant allegedly killed in the attack (via Rudaw)
  • The aftermath of the Dutch strike on Hawijah in 2015 which killed an estimated 70 civilians (via Iraqi Revolution).
  • Industrial area of Hawijah, before (above) and after (below) the attack (via NOS).
  • Photo of destruction of Hawijah's industrial area. It is unclear when this photo was taken (via NOS).
  • Footage of Hawijah after the airstrike on June 3th, 2015, published as propaganda by the Islamic State shortly after the incident (via VRT).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • France24 report on the airstrike of May 11th, 2020 (via France24).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Recommendation to update the target development process in a US document released in April 2020 (via NOS).

Geolocation notes (6) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة), Kirkuk province, specifically the “city centre” area and the “industrial district area Bahoijh” (الحي الصناعي بالحويجة). The majority of reports monitored by Airwars state that the incident occurred at night, most likely closely after midnight on Wednesday, June 3rd. There were conflicting reports – on Thursday, June 4th 2015, bas news stated that the incident occurred on “Wednesday evening” (June 3rd, 2015). On June 5th, 2015, alquds quoted a member of the Security Committee in the Kirkuk provincial council, Mohammed Jubouri, as saying a ”French aircraft bombed late on Thursday, a bomb manufacturing plant belonging to the ‘State’ in the district of Hawija.” Reuters reported “in a statement on Wednesday, the Coalition said an airstrike targeted a ‘vehicle-borne improvised explosive device facility’ in Hawija between 8 am on June 2 and 8 am the following day” Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 35.323474, 43.78453.

  • Industrial district in the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة)

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

  • Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction

    Date taken:
    June 5, 2015

    Resolution:
    30 m

    Imagery:
    © 2018 USGS

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2018

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    November 6, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

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
    70
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    Hawijah, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLE894093
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

Coalition
  • Dec 11, 2018
  • Via email from CJTFOIR spokesman to NRC: Q. Can someone confirm or deny the CIVCAS from this particular incident from 2015? A. Yes. See the attached Strike Releases. Q. Can you confirm that the Coalition carried out air strikes in the night of 2-3 June 2015 on an alleged IED-production facility in Hawija, Kirkuk, Iraq? A. Yes. See above. 5 June 2015, in a press briefing, LtGen Hesterman said "after a very disciplined targeting process, we dropped a fairly small weapon on a known IED building in an industrial area. The secondary explosion, which was caused from a massive amount of Daesh high explosives, was very large, and it destroyed much of that industrial area.... "Let's be clear. What did the damage was the huge amount of high explosives that Daesh intended to turn into murderous weapons to kill Iraqi forces and innocent civilians. If there're unintended injuries, that responsibility rests squarely on Daesh." https://dod.defense.gov/News/Transcripts/Transcript-View/Article/607056/ Q. Can you confirm that the above mentioned airstrike has led to civilian casualties? A. Yes. Q. What is the number of civilian casualties in the incident, as assessed or estimated by the Coalition? A. The strike to the VBIED factory caused secondary explosions that unfortunately killed 70 civilians despite the precautions the Coalition took to mitigate civilian casualties. Q. What is the outcome of the formal inquiry the Coalition has launched into this incident? A. The investigation found that the strike was in accordance with the Law of Armed Conflict and the applicable Rules of Engagement.

Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • June 2, 2015, in Hawijah, Iraq, via media report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh facility. Regrettably an unknown number of civilians were unintentionally killed as a result of the strike. Case # 49 Location: 38SLE894093 CJTF-OIR cannot confirm the number of casualties through our assessment process.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI753

Incident date

June 8, 2017

Location

حي الزنجيلي, Mosul, Zinjili, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.35063, 43.10881 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Local sources referred to the United Nations Human Rights Office saying that 50 to 80 civilians were killed after airstrikes and shelling hit Zanjili neighborhood in West Mosul.

In January 2019, the Coalition accepted responsibility for the event, noting: “Coalition aircraft struck an ISIS building and unintentionally killed 10 civilians.”

Sawlf Ateka posted a video of a man from Zanjili, saying he lost twelve members of his family under the rubble, and left the house alone.

News of Iraq said in a Tweet that seven families had died under the rubble of their houses in Zanjili neighbourhood “near the mosque of the martyr Fares.” The same was reported by @OHAcaElqEGKAGH6. Both blamed the Iraqi army.

The Coalition provided Airwars with the coordinates for this event accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    50 – 80
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Scenes from the aftermath of the attacks

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 36.3502851, 43.1098795

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 deaths conceded
    10
  • Stated location
    near Zanjili neighborhood, Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF303245
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jan 31, 2019
  • June 8, 2017, near Zanjili neighborhood, Mosul, Iraq, via Airwars report. Coalition aircraft struck an ISIS building and unintentionally killed 10 civilians.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For June 7th-8th: “Near Mosul, three strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; destroyed 15 fighting positions, three heavy machine guns, two VBIEDs, and a sniper position; and damaged a fighting position and a command and control node.”

iraq_government_forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    50 – 80
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI654

Incident date

April 19, 2017

Location

الثورة, Mosul: Thawra neighbourhood, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.34325, 43.09785 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Multiple sources reported that more than 90 civilians died in a major incident in Al Thawra (Revolution) neighbourhood in Old Mosul. As Reuters noted, “Dozens of civilians were killed on Saturday by air strikes targeting homes in the Thawra district on the western side of Mosul, a neighborhood declared by Iraqi forces restored overnight by the Islamic state, local residents said.”

In June 2019 the Coalition accepted responsibility for this allegation of civilian harm – though conceded just one death. Its monthly civilian casualty report noted: “Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh fighting position. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed due to their proximity to the strike.” This was later declared by the Pentagon to have been a US action.

Local Facebook group Sawlf Ateka reported that fatalities had resulted from actions by several belligerents: “The bodies of civilians fill the streets of Al-Thawra district, on the right side of Mosul.” They allegedly died after sniper attacks, “terrorist attacks, or because of the indiscriminate bombardment of mortars, artillery and aerial bombardment by the security forces.”

Sources reported to Al Jazeera that “there are dozens of civilians under the rubble, [and] no one knows whether they were alive or dead because Iraqi forces prevented anyone from reaching these areas.”

Iraq Newspaper cited a senior official of the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior’s Rapid Response Force, who spoke of a “total destruction of more than 30 houses in the Thawra neighbourhood, including houses belonging to the region’s dignitaries.”

Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi and his father died after an airstrike was carried out in front of their house

It was also reported that Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa, a neurologist in the Al-Thawra neighborhood, also died together with his father and son.

Mosul News Now (local Facebook group) named Ahmed Shiite Aida Abu Doaa as one of the victims. He reportedly was Director of Accreditation Company Asia Cell and Sales Manager of North Sale Company. Local comparisons were made to of the “massacre” to the major incident in New Mosul neighbourhood, on March 17th-18th.

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

In May 2020 in its annual civilian harm report to Congress, the Pentagon said this had been a US action.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi Adult male killed
  • Father of Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi Adult male killed

Family members (3)

  • Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Adult male killed
  • Father of Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Adult male killed
  • Son of Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Child male killed
  • Ahmed Shiite Aida Abu Doaa Adult male Director of Accreditation Company Asia Cell and Sales Manager of North Sale Company killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    90
  • (1 child3 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (6) [ collapse]

  • Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi and his father allegedly died after an airstrike hit their neighbourhood in Old Mosul, on April 19th (via Sawl Ateka Facebook)
  • Dr. Mohammed al-Sheikh Issa, who used to be a neurologist, allegedly died in airstrikes on Old Mosul, together with his father and son (via Sawlf Ateka)
  • Ahmed Shit Aida Abu Doaa, reportedly died after airstrikes and shelling hit Revolution neighbourhood (via Mosul News Now)
  • Video showing the aftermath of the strikes
  • A second video showing the aftermath
  • Table from May 2020 Pentagon report to Congress, conceding additional US civilian harm events in Iraq and Syria during 2017.

Geolocation notes

Prior the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwas had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 36.34389,43.103399. In June 2019 the Coalition released the MGRS as 38SLF293237.

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 strike blast
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Al Thawra, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF293237
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 29, 2019
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • April 19, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via social media report: After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographic area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.

  • Apr. 19, 2017, near Al Thawra, Iraq, via Airwars report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh fighting position. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed due to their proximity to the strike.

United States
  • May 6, 2020
  • Since last year’s Section 1057 report, CJTF-OIR assessed that an additional 21 reports of civilian casualties during 2017 were credible, with approximately 71 civilians killed and approximately 13 civilians injured as result of U.S. military operations. With these additional assessments, CJTF-OIR assessed that a total number of 191 reports of civilian casualties during 2017 were credible, with approximately 864 civilians killed and approximately 219 civilians injured. 19-Apr-17 Al Thawra, Iraq Air 0 civilians injured 1 civilian killed

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For April 18th-19th the Coalition publicly stated: “Near Mosul, eight strikes engaged six ISIS tactical units, destroyed 11 fighting positions, six rocket-propelled grenade systems, five anti-air artillery systems, four medium machine guns, four VBIEDs, a weapons cache, a front-end loader, an ISIS vehicle, a command and control node; and suppressed four fighting positions, four ISIS supply routes and four ISIS tactical units.”

iraq_government_forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    90
  • (1 child3 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI467

Incident date

February 19, 2017

Location

الشفاء, Mosul, Al-Shafaa, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.35257, 43.120057 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 1m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 1m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Local sources said that up to 130 civilians were killed and 78 injured after Coalition airstrikes and/ or Iraqi artillery had struck many residential buildings in Al-Shafaa (Shifa) in West Mosul. The Coalition has confirmed causing 10 deaths.

Press sources had told Yaqein that “the retaliatory shelling by aircraft and artillery by government forces had, from dawn on Sunday, targeted residential neighborhoods at the right side of Mosul, killing 30 civilians, including seven children.”

Iraqi Spring Media Center initially also reported 30 dead, including seven children. It said that Iraqi government forces were responsible for the shelling “with artillery and planes.” In a later post, it put the death toll even higher, at 49, and spoke of 78 wounded, mostly women and children. However, it reported “massive bombing by the Coalition”. Al Jazeera also blamed the Coalition for dozens of civilian deaths, and suggested that the 49 dead and 78 wounded were numbers reported by the ISIL press agency.

Raedlay and Correspondences team reported the same numbers and said these were the result of US strikes on residential buildings and shops in the neighborhood of Shifa.

Correspondences Team later also reported raids near Qasim Al-Khayat (street in Shifa neighbourhood) on a building used by displaced families. It said dozens were killed or wounded.

Al Rafidain channel posted a video on Twitter showing the aftermath of the raids on Shifa neighbourhood, including several wounded and dead bodies pulled from the rubble. It said the Coalition was responsible, and equally reported 49 killed and 78 wounded, mostly women and children. The same video was shared by Iraqyoon.

In a report of February 21st, Yaqein suggested the death toll had risen dramatically: “It is noteworthy that about 130 civilians, were killed earlier, on Monday, in the massacre committed by the Coalition forces across the bombed Shifa neighborhood in the west side of the city of Mosul, Nineveh province.”

Mosul Ateka (Facebook) reported that Ammar Abd was killed in the raids: “Martyr (Ammar Abd) will also join the caravan of martyrs in the wake of the bombing that took place yesterday on healing [Shifa] district in the right side of # Mosul, [he] leaves behind three children (..)”.

In another post, Mosul Ateka reported the death of “Engineer Ibrahim Mohammed Ibrahim after raids on Qasim Al-Khayat (streets in Shifa neighbourhood). Mohammed Hussein Sawas at Shifa has also been named as a victim.

In July 2017 the Coalition confirmed an event at al Shifa as credible: “Feb. 19, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via self-report: During a strike on an ISIS headquarters building, it was assessed that 10 civilians were unintentionally killed.”

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

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    30 – 130
  • (7 children3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    78
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces

Sources (17) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Ammar Abd was reportedly killed in Coalition raids on Shifa neighbourhood, leaving three children behind (via Mosul Ateka)
  • Mohammed Hussein Sawas at Shifa

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 deaths conceded
    10
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    1 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF3131324695
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • Feb. 19, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via self-report: During a strike on an ISIS headquarters building, it was assessed that 10 civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For February 18th-19th the Coalition publicly noted: “Near Mosul, nine strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and an ISIS staging area; destroyed four ISIS headquarters, four watercraft, three engineering equipment pieces, three command and control nodes, two artillery systems, a vehicle, an excavator, a fighting position, an ISIS-held building, and an ISIS support facility; damaged nine supply routes and three tunnels; and suppressed 11 mortar teams, and an artillery team.”

iraq_government_forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    30 – 130
  • (7 children3 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    78
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    iraq_government_forces

Sources (17) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI550

Incident date

March 17, 2017

Location

الموصل الجديدة, Mosul, Mosul al Jadida / New Mosul, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.33256, 43.1059 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 the highest confirmed civilian casualty event of the war against ISIL, at least 105 and as many as 141 non-combatants were later confirmed by the Coalition as having been killed in a US airstrike on a house in West Mosul’s al Jadida area. At least 137 bodies were reportedly recovered from the scene.

Locals have claimed that as many as 230 or even 520 civilians were killed in the catastrophic event at al Jadida – though these higher numbers may conflate a series of events over a number of days of violence in the neighbourhood.

The Coalition later confirmed it had carried out a strike “in the vicinity of alleged civilian casualties” and launched an investigation. This eventually concluded that a US bomb had killed between 105 and 141 civilians – though the Coalition also claimed that ISIL explosives had contributed to the disaster.

The Iraqi military initially placed the death toll at 61 killed – and blamed ISIL. This was at odds with Iraqi civil defence on the scene, who reported at least 137 bodies at first and said the incident was caused by an airstrike.

It was reported that a house near Al Rahma Al Ahli Hospital was bombed in which hundreds of displaced people were hosted, providing them food and shelter as well as a cellar to provide protection from airstrikes. However there were also claims that ISIL had deliberately trapped people in the building.

There was some initial reporting confusion about the date of the incident, which was placed variously between March 17th-20th. It is possible that a number of additional strikes in the near vicinity over some days may also have caused casualties.

Both the Coalition and Iraq had announced investigations into whether they had conducted an airstrike which may have ‘indvertently’ ignited a fuel truck and perhaps a VBIED at the scene.

Correspondences Team identified the house as the 3-storey building of Haj Tawfik house. Abdulrahman Al Lawzi reported on Facebook that the Coalition hit the house in New Mosul and that all the people in it had died. 56 male bodies had been found, but “rescue efforts were unable to reach the lower hall where the bodies of women and children are buried”. In total, 126 people were reported killed, as well as 8 in the house next door. Later, Waradana news said that about 150 bodies were still under the rubble. Mosul Insta, a local Facebook group, reported as many as 250 dead:

“More than 250 human beings lost their lives in vain. Children, women, elderly and disabled only in the new Mosul area. The list of victims goes on and on and the war rages and burns everything and I do not see it ending soon. The people of Mosul do not have their parents”.

Al Jazeera posted a graphic video reporting the strikes, speaking of 137 bodies, mostly women and children.

Iraqi Vice-President Osama al-Nujaifi called for an immediate halt to the bombing of western Mosul neighborhoods. “The intensity of the fighting against the terrorist is not exempting officials and leaders from moral and humanitarian responsibility for the increase in the number of innocent civilian casualties who have been forced to remain in their areas by the terrorist organization,” he said.

In a filmed visit to the scene on March 24th, the head of the Iraq Provincial Council Basma Basim said that she feared as many as 500 locals had in fact died at al Jadida. The Iraqi Observatory also claimed that 500 bodies had so far been recovered. Local MP Ali al-Metwati claimed 600 had died – and that the authorities were covering up the deaths. These high allegations may relate to overall civilian fatalities in the neighbourhood.

On March 26th, Alaraby news reported that “the number of people killed in the US air raid on the new Mosul district on the western coast of the city rose to 511, including 187 children under the age of 15, Iraqi officials said.”

A day later, on March 27th, Al Araby put the death toll at 520. On March 31st, it raised it to 531.

Both the United Nations and Amnesty International subsequently released information on the attack. The Amnesty report contained the following account: “As the fighting intensified Wa’ad Ahmad al-Tai, his brother Mahmoud and their families sought shelter at their other brother’s two-storey home hoping it would offer them more protection. “We were all huddled in one room at the back of the house, 18 of us, three families. But when the house next door was bombed, it collapsed on us, precisely over the room we were sheltering in. My son Yusef, nine, and my daughter Shahad, three, were killed, together with my brother Mahmoud, his wife Manaya and their nine-year-old son Aws, and my niece Hanan. She was cradling her five-month-old daughter, who survived, thank God,” he said.”

A relative of the family said the following in a video by Al Jazeera:

“My family were in three houses, 26 persons, I was always in touch with them before the bombardment. On Thursday morning, my brother sent me a message which reads “ Wafa’a, we cannot call due to the heavy bombardment” my heart was feeling like I am not going to see my family again. Their neighbor, Saker, was the only one who survived (…)”

In July 2019, the Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Hisham Hazem Age unknown male From the Sheikh family killed
  • Issam Hazem Age unknown male From the Sheikh family killed

Family members (2)

  • Firas Child male Child of Ali Sarhan Al Hayali - possibly killed in separate event killed
  • Taiba Child female Child of Ali Sarhan Al Hayali - possibly killed in separate event killed

Family members (4)

  • Ali Thamer Abdulla Adult male Twin brother of Rakan Thamer Abdulla killed
  • Rakan Thamer Abdulla Adult male Twin brother of Ali Thamer Abdulla killed
  • Haj Thamer Abdulla Adult male Father killed
  • 23 additional family members reported killed

Family members (1)

  • The family of the wife of Karim Jassim Al Salim Unknown number of victims

Family members (1)

  • Yarub Khader Kadawi Adult male One of 12 family members reported killed killed

Family members (1)

  • Basem al-Muhzam’s family 11 persons reported killed killed

Family members (1)

  • The Sinjari family Age unknown 30 persons reported killed killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    105 – 141
  • (22 children5 women4 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    6
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (83) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (12) [ collapse]

  • Firas and Taiba died on March 20th in New Mosul (via Mosul is Here Facebook group)
  • These twin brothers were allegedly killed when a Coalition airstrike hit their home on March 17th/18th in Al Jadida, Mosul (via Captain Farqad and Egypt Gym, Facebook)
  • Another picture of the twin brothers
  • More picture of the brothers
  • Body bags being buried after the incident
  • An unnamed girl supposedly killed in the strike (via Adna Khalil)
  • Yarub Khader Kadawi (via Maram Al Alhanin)
  • Two more unnamed victims allegedly killed in the strike (via Mohammed Kareem)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A man allegedly found under rubble four days after the attack (via Women of Mosul)
  • Aftermath of the strike (via LA Times)
  • Body bags being carried away after the strike (via LA Times)
  • UN statement on the incident

Geolocation notes

Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 36.3323266, 43.1050515

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), Killed in adjacent structure
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    105–141
  • Stated location
    near Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF300225
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • May 25, 2017
  • Jun 2, 2017
  • During a strike on ISIS snipers firing on partnered forces, 101 civilians were unintentionally killed when the munition struck the building igniting ISIS- planted explosives that destroyed the structure and killed an additional four civilians in an adjacent structure.

  • CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED May 25, 2017 Release # 20170525-02 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CJTF-OIR Completes Airstrike Investigation SOUTHWEST ASIA - A Combined Joint Task Force - Operation Inherent Resolve investigation of a March 17 Coalition airstrike in the Al Jadidah district of Mosul, Iraq, found that a secondary explosion triggered a rapid failure of the structure, in which two ISIS snipers, 101 civilians sheltered in the bottom floors of the structure, and four civilians in a neighboring structure were killed. An additional 36 civilians who were reported to be connected to the structure remain unaccounted for. The investigation determined that ISIS emplaced a large amount of explosive material in a structure containing a significant number of civilians and then attacked Iraqi forces from the structure. Around 8 a.m. on March 17, 2017, Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against two ISIS snipers engaging Iraqi Counterterrorism Service soldiers at the request of the local Commander. Neither Coalition nor Iraqi forces knew that civilians were sheltered within the structure. The Coalition selected a single GBU-38 precision-guided munition as the most appropriate and proportionate means of engagement to neutralize the threat and to minimize collateral damage. The GBU-38's detonation, localized to the top floor of the structure, ignited a large amount of explosive material which, unknown to the Coalition, ISIS fighters had previously placed in the house. Post-blast analysis detected residues common to explosives used by ISIS, but not consistent with the explosive content of a GBU-38 munition. Furthermore, weapons and structural experts concluded, based on extensive modeling, the structural damage to the building was in a different location, and was in excess of what could have been caused by a single GBU-38 munition. "Our condolences go out to all those that were affected," said Maj. Gen. Joe Martin, Commanding General CJFLCC-OIR. "The Coalition takes every feasible measure to protect civilians from harm. The best way to protect civilians is to defeat ISIS."

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For March 17th-18th the Coalition reported: “Near Mosul, four strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units; destroyed 56 ISIS vehicles, 25 fighting positions, five rocket-propelled grenade systems, two medium machine guns, two mortar systems, and an ISIS VBIED; and suppressed 20 ISIS mortar teams and four ISIS tactical units.”

Media
from belligerent (3) [ collapse]

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    105 – 141
  • (22 children5 women4 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    6
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition

Sources (83) [ collapse]