Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Belligerent
Country
Libya
start date
end date
Civilian Harm Status
Belligerent Assessment
Declassified Documents
Infrastructure

Incident Code

LC434

Incident date

July 22, 2022

Location

زاوية الدهماني, Zawiyat Al Dahmani, Tripoli, Libya

Geolocation

32.896195, 13.206208 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Civil casualties resulted from unknown shelling of the radio building in Zawiya al-Dahmani on July 22, 2022.

@AnisAbdaljawad reported that shells fell next to the radio station, Zawiya al-Dahmani.

@taqarifatnews quoted the spokesman for the Emergency and Ambulance Service, Osama Ali, who stated that the shelling next to the radio building caused casualties.

No other additional information is available to Airwars at the time.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the Zawiyat Al Dahmani (زاوية الدهماني) neighbourhood of Tripoli (طرابلس). The generic coordinates for Zawiyat Al Dahmani are: 32.896195, 13.206208. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

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Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC124

Incident date

April 24, 2019

Location

طرابلس‎, Tripoli, Libya

Geolocation

32.886602, 13.190912 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

One civilian was reportedly injured by indiscriminate shelling on Tripoli.

The Center for Field Medicine and Support said that Dr. Mohammed Al-Khitouni was wounded when a shell dropped near his hospital. The page posted a picture of him recovering at the hospital.

Local reports of shelling point at the GNA or LNA as the perpetrator of the shelling.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Dr. Mohammed Al-Khitouni
Adult male Doctor injured

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the city of Tripoli (طرابلس‎), for which the generic coordinates are: 32.886602, 13.190912. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Picture of the alleged victim

Government of National Accord Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Government of National Accord
  • Government of National Accord position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Libyan National Army Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Libyan National Army
  • Libyan National Army position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC156

Incident date

June 26, 2019

Location

وادي الربيع, Wadi al Rabie, Tripoli, Libya

Geolocation

32.709600, 13.382378 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Three civilians were allegedly killed by indiscriminate shelling on the Wadi al Rabie neighbourhood of Tajoura.

LCNA reported: “A random shell landed Tuesday night on the house of Mohammed Salim al-Mazouji in the Wadi Al Rabie area, killing two of his sons, in addition to his granddaughter while they were inside the house.”

Other sources published similar reports.

Local reports of fighting point at the GNA or the LNA as perpetrators of the shelling.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the neighbourhood of Wadi Al Rabie (الطويشة), for which the generic coordinates are: 32.709600, 13.382378. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

  • Reports of the incident mention the neighbourhood of Wadi Al Rabie (الطويشة).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

Summary

  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (1 child2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Government of National Accord Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Government of National Accord
  • Government of National Accord position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Libyan National Army Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Libyan National Army
  • Libyan National Army position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (1 child2 men)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC110

Incident date

April 11, 2019

Location

السواني, Al Swani, Tripoli, Libya

Geolocation

32.712224, 13.072240 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Between one and 12 civilians were allegedly killed by indiscriminate shelling on Al-Swani.

Tripoli Now reported: “Indiscriminate shelling of innocent people and their homes in Al-Swani axis, which led to the death of two families. Another family was injured and 12 civilians were killed so far.”

Libya Alahrar TV said one civilian was killed in Al-Swani due to shelling by Haftar (LNA) forces. In a video piece it showed the impact of the shelling.

Sputnik News blamed the GNA on the other hand: “Indiscriminate shells targeted civilian homes in the area of ​​Al-Swani southwest of Tripoli by armed forces of the Government of National Accord. The witnesses said that ‘the shells fired indiscriminately on civilian houses in Al-Swani areas in the vicinity resulted in the injury of many civilians.'”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the town of Al Swani (السواني), for which the generic coordinates are: 32.712224, 13.07224. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1 – 12
  • Civilians reported injured
    5–20
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (5) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A man allegedly injured by the shelling (via Tripoli Now)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Another man allegedly injured by the shelling (via Tripoli Now)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Another man allegedly injured by the shelling (via Tripoli Now)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Another man allegedly injured by the shelling (via Tripoli Now)
  • Video showing the aftermath of the strike

Government of National Accord Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Government of National Accord
  • Government of National Accord position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Libyan National Army Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Libyan National Army
  • Libyan National Army position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1 – 12
  • Civilians reported injured
    5–20
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC434

Incident date

May 25, 2023

Location

السيدة زينب, Al Saida Zainab, Al Zawiya, Libya

Airwars assessment

A civilian was slightly injured, in addition to several personnel affiliated with the ministry, by declared Government of National Unity (GNU)/Turkish drone or air strikes near the Sayeda Zeinab area on May 25, 2023.

A tweet from @wady_dynar quoted spokesman for the Ambulance and Emergency Service, Osama Ali, who reported that “a person was slightly injured as a result of bombing near the Sayeda Zeinab area, south of Al-Zawiya” while the bombing in the Al Maya port did not result in any injuries. @omarbosadh reported “dead and wounded” from the bombing but did not specify who or how many.

The Government of National Unity (GNU) announced that the strikes ordered by interim Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah had “successfully hit their targets” which were “hideouts used by gangs of smugglers in fuel, narcotics and humans” around Zawiya, as reported by the News Arab.

However, the parliament, which is based in the east of the country, said that the target of the strikes was the home of Zawiya lawmaker Ali Bouzribah, who is a rival of the GNU government: “Parliament followed with deep concern the drone strike on Zawiya targeting the home of the city’s representative Ali Bouzribah” and the “flagrant attack… on civilians and civilian installations” said the speaker’s office. Reuters reported that according to the parliament, several personnel affiliated with the ministry were injured.

The News Arab reported that drone strikes occurred around Al-Maya, a small port. A video posted by Al Zawiya Al Hadath 24 on Facebook shows a military vehicle at a Stabilization and Support headquarters in Abu Surra. According to Reuters, three residents of Zawiya said that they heard explosions and one also heard gunfire.

The LibyaHerald stated that despite the Defense Ministry having declared the strikes, many believe that the strikes were carried out by Turkish drones, with @libyapress2010 specifically referring to Turkish Bayraktar drones. Reuters pointed out that the GNU government has no known air power of its own.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1–3
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    GNA/Turkish Military

Sources (16) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • Screenshot of Facebook post by Al Zawiya Al Hadath
  • Screenshot of Facebook post by Al Zawiya Al Hadath 24
  • Screenshot of Facebook post by Al Zawiya Al Anqaa

GNA/Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    GNA/Turkish Military
  • GNA/Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

GNA/Turkish Military

#Statement of the Ministry of Defense regarding air strikes in the West Coast region
In the name of God, the most gracious, the most merciful
The Ministry of Defense reports that our national aviation carried out accurate and targeted air strikes this morning against the hideouts of fuel smuggling gangs, drug trafficking and human trafficking in the West Coast region, and by the grace of God, they were successful strikes that achieved their desired goals.
The Ministry of Defense, while carrying out its national mission under the direct supervision of the Prime Minister, confirms the implementation of the instructions and the military plan set in order to purify the areas of the West Coast and the rest of Libya from the dens of crime and gang actions, and that it will never delay in carrying out its national duty.
The Ministry of Defense also calls on all citizens to fully cooperate with the military forces and the General Staff in military operations, which will not stop until all of its objectives are achieved.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1–3
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    GNA/Turkish Military

Sources (16) [ collapse]

Incident Code

Lib2011-092

Incident date

May 13, 2011

Location

مرسى البريقة, Brega, Al Wahat, Libya

Geolocation

30.411123, 19.570076 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Between 11 and 16 civilians were reported killed in a NATO airstrike on Brega.

Both the BBC and the Washington Post said that eleven clerics were killed in the attack, while Reuters noted that “Nine imams were among 11 people killed in a strike on a guest house in the eastern city of Brega on Friday, the government said. The other two were buried elsewhere.”

Libyan State TV was reported to have declared that 16 civilians were killed in the attack. And the Express Tribune added that 50 people were allegedly wounded.

Al Jazeera wrote: “On Friday, a Libyan military source said that 16 people were killed and 30 wounded in the NATO raid on a guesthouse in Buraiqa, when at the time of the raid dozens of clerics came to attend a celebration. On Friday, Libyan state television showed scenes of nine bodies with several injuries.”

Reuters and The Express Tribune additionally quoted NATO officials commenting on the allegation: “Command and control bunker was struck in Brega early this (Friday) morning, as the structure was being used by the Qaddafi regime to coordinate strikes against the Libyan civilian population.

We are aware of allegations of civilian casualties in connection to this strike and although we cannot independently confirm the validity of the claim we regret any loss of life by innocent civilians when they occur.”

The Eg-11 Blog posted the following: “A spokesman for the Libyan revolutionaries, Ahmed Bani, denied, on Friday, that any civilian had been killed due to the bombing by NATO fighter jets in the city of Brega.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the town of Brega (البريقة), for which the generic coordinates are: 30.411123, 19.570076. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    11 – 16
  • (9–11 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    NATO forces
  • Known targets
    Gaddafi forces, Other

Sources (15) [ collapse]

NATO forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    NATO forces
  • NATO 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
    Insufficient evidence of civilian harm
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None

Civilian casualty statements

NATO forces
  • Mar 8, 2012
  • The Marsa El Brega Residence and Command Bunker Facility served as the primary C2 facility for forces fielded by the 32d Brigade in and around Brega. It was deliberately targeted and struck on 13 May. During engagement of the target, it was positively identified and four precision-guided munitions were dropped. The strike was highly effective, and decisively degraded command and control in the Brega area. Battle damage assessment indicated no collateral damage. After this strike, an engineer who had been involved in the design and construction of the command bunker facility publicly confirmed that it had been constructed for Col. Gaddafi and had been purpose built for command and control functions.

Original strike reports

NATO forces

In the vicinity of Brega: 2 Tanks.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    11 – 16
  • (9–11 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    NATO forces
  • Known targets
    Gaddafi forces, Other

Sources (15) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC201a

Incident date

September 19, 2019

Location

مرزق, Murzuq, Libya

Geolocation

25.919023, 13.923895 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

The US conducted a rare action against militant targets in Libya in September 2019, striking what it later said was “a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants.”

In April 2020, US Africa Command reported that no civilians were harmed in this action near Murzuq on September 19th, 2019 – which appears to have been confused in some public reporting with a nearby problem LNA/ UAE strike on the same date (see LC201.).

A day after the original airstrike, AFRICOM had released a statement, asserting that “at this time, an airstrike that killed eight (8) terrorists is being assessed. At present, we estimate that no civilians were injured or injured as a result of this airstrike.” The statement also read that the strike was conducted in coordination with the internationally recognised Libyan Government of National Accord.

On April 28th 2020, in its first quarterly civilian casualty report, US Africa Command then reported that “AFRICOM received one allegation from an online media source claiming an unspecified number of civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Murzuq, Libya, on September 19, 2019.”

The report continued: “After review, the allegation was assessed to be unsubstantiated. On September 19, 2019 a kinetic strike was executed against a compound which U.S. intelligence confirmed was a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants. Significant and multiple sources of intelligence was compiled to clearly identify the nature of the target. It is assessed that civilian casualties did not occur as a result of U.S. military action.”

At the time of the action, 218TV reported that 10 militants had been killed. According to Al Marsad, “a senior intelligence source told the Observatory, preferring to remain anonymous, that one of those killed was the terrorist Ali Al Tabawi”, also known as Abu Hamza Al Tabawi or Ali Al Dernawi. Le Revolution Tchadieen wrote on Facebook that militant Moussa Hajj Azrak also died in the airstrikes.

Airwars has not so far identified any public sources alleging civilian harm in this incident. The source AFRICOM may have confused the incident with alleged LNA/UAE airstrikes on Murzuq on that same day (LC201) in which, according to our records, up to four civilians were killed.

Murzuq News had reported that in total, four air raids were monitored on Murzuq on September 19th, 2019.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the town of Murzuq (مرزق), for which the generic coordinates are: 25.919023, 13.923895. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    ISIS - Libya
  • Belligerents reported killed
    8–10

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (5) [ collapse]

  • AFRICOM statement on U.S. airstrikes near Murzuq on September 19th, 2019 (via Al Marsad).
  • Footage of confirmed U.S. airstrikes targeted ISIS militants near Murzuq on September 19th, 2019 (via @MMAlwrfly).
  • Translation of tweet: "One of the pages of a Chadian opposition mourns one of their leaders who died yesterday during an American raid on them in the city of Murzuq and he knows that the terrorist militia government the reconciliation government said about them that they are their forces south protection forces and they are originally mercenaries from Chad and terrorists from ISIS." (via @hmGZBUaOxvGAH4x ).
  • Militant Moussa Hajj Azrak was allegedly killed in U.S. airstrikes near Murzaq on September 19th, 2020 (via Le revolution tchadieen).

US Forces Assessment:

  • Known 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
    Insufficient evidence of civilian harm
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    vicinity of Murzuq
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US Forces
  • Apr 27, 2020
  • September 23, 2019, AFRICOM received one allegation from an online media source claiming an unspecified number of civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Murzuq, Libya, on September 19, 201 After review, the allegation was assessed to be unsubstantiated. On September 19, 2019 a kinetic strike was executed against a compound which U.S. intelligence confirmed was a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants. Significant and multiple sources of intelligence was compiled to clearly identify the nature of the target. It is assessed that civilian casualties did not occur as a result of U.S. military action.

Original strike reports

US Forces

"9. September 23, 2019, AFRICOM received one allegation from an online media source claiming an unspecified number of civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Murzuq, Libya, on September 19, 2019. After review, the allegation was assessed to be unsubstantiated. On September 19, 2019 a kinetic strike was executed against a compound which U.S. intelligence confirmed was a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants. Significant and multiple sources of intelligence was compiled to clearly identify the nature of the target. It is assessed that civilian casualties did not occur as a result of U.S. military action."

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    ISIS - Libya
  • Belligerents reported killed
    8–10

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Incident Code

LC112

Incident date

April 12, 2019

Location

قصر بن غشير, Qasr Bin Gashir, Tripoli, Libya

Geolocation

32.688716, 13.173889 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Othman Mesbah Akak was reportedly killed by indiscriminate artillery shelling on Qasr Bin Gashir.

Riyadh Burshan said that the died from a shell falling on his house.

Local reporting points at the GNA or the LNA as the perpetrator of the shelling.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Othman Mesbah Akak
Adult male killed

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the town of Qasr Bin Gashir (قصر بن غشير), for which the generic coordinates are: 32.688716, 13.173889. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Government of National Accord Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Government of National Accord
  • Government of National Accord position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Libyan National Army Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Libyan National Army
  • Libyan National Army position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Government of National Accord, Libyan National Army

Sources (1) [ collapse]