Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

R4346

Incident date

July 17–18, 2021

Location

احسم, Ihsem, Idlib, Syria

Airwars assessment

Between six and eight civilians, including three to four children and three women, were killed and nine to 11 others, including four children and three women, were injured in alleged Russian and regime strikes on the town of Ihsem around midnight on July 17/July 18, 2021.

According to an Al Jazeera correspondent in Syria, “7 civilians from the same family, all women and children, were killed as a result of missile strikes by the Syrian regime forces that targeted a house in the town of Ihsem in Idlib countryside, and others were wounded.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights originally identified “three women and two children were killed on Saturday evening in the town of Ihsem in the southern countryside of Idlib” and later updated their toll to seven civilians killed, including four women and three children, while Al Modon provided the numbers “3 children and 3 women from one family were killed”. Horrya News identified one of the civilians killed as a health worker.

Civil Defense said on its Facebook page that “6 civilians (3 children and 3 women) were killed, and 9 other civilians were wounded, including 4 children and 3 women, in an initial outcome”. Al Mohrar Media published that the number of injured was more than 10 people, “most of them in critical condition, and the ambulance and civil defense teams worked to transport them to medical points.”

A post from Jabaal Zawya Today named the victims killed in the bombing: Yousra Sergawi, wife of Muhammad Taha, 50 years old; Heba Taqiqa, daughter of Muhammad Taqiqa, 20 years old; Maryam Barakat, Taha’s wife, 20 years old; Khadija Taqiqa, daughter of Samer, 6 years old; Iman Taqiqa, daughter of Samer 4 years old; Tasneem, daughter of Samer, 5 years old; Widad, Sadiq’s wife, 45 years old. A tweet from @Alassaf1977 identified that Taha Taqiqa, the son of Muhammad Taha Taqaqa, 26 years old, had died from his wounds. Aya Sophia Samer Taqiqa, granddaughter of Muhammad Taha, 1 year old, died two days later of her wounds, as reported by @hadikhraat.

Ehsim Now posted the names of those injured: Muhammad Taha Taqiqa, 55 years old; Akram Taqiqa, the son of Muhammad Taha Taqiqa, a minor injury, 14 years old; Hamza Teqiqa, the son of Muhammad Taha, a minor injury, 4 years old; Saba Taqiqa, daughter of Muhammad Taqiqa, a 14-year-old, hand amputation injury; Hadeel Taqiqa, daughter of Muhammad Taha Tuqiqa, Injury, 17 years old; Fatima Taqiqa, daughter of Muhammad Taha, a 20-year-old injured; Sadiq Taqiqa Ibn Abdul Latif, a minor injury, 50 years old; Samer Taqiqa.

Among the dead is Taha Taqiqa, who “waited for his bride [Maryam Barakat] for several years until she graduated from university, and after her graduation she came to him and they got married three days ago. Yesterday, a shell fell and killed him and his bride, along with six other family members, in the town of Ihsim in Idlib countryside” according to a tweet from @Alassaf1977.

Samer Muhammad Sabri Taqiqa, the father of Aya, Iman, Khadija and Tasneem, lost four of his daughters and insisted that he dress Aya in her Eid costume before he bid her final farewell, Al Jazeera reported. He named his daughter Aya Sophia because she was “born in conjunction with the opening of the Hagia Sophia Mosque in Istanbul last year by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.”

@Gurbtwatan tweeted that it took “more than 30 hours” for the Civil Defense teams to retrieve the body of Iman Samer Taqiqa from under the rubble.

France24 reported that “an AFP photographer in Ihsem saw paramedics working after midnight under floodlights to retrieve the body of a woman from the rubble of the roof of a collapsed house. They wrapped the body in a blanket and took it to an ambulance. A survivor of the family told AFP that visitors were gathered at the house to congratulate a family member on his marriage.”

The majority of sources that reported on the incident attributed the strikes to the regime or the regime and Russia. Al Araby News blames the regime and reported that regime forces bombed the village “from the Hamidiya base in the city of Maarat al-Numan”. However, Shaam News identified artillery shelling, originating from the Russian forces, with advanced Krassenpol missiles, coinciding with the flight of Russian reconnaissance planes that did not leave the airspace. They added that “the defense teams had great difficulty working, as reconnaissance planes monitored the area at night,” for fear that they would launch a double strike on the rescue crews.

The incident occured around midnight.

The victims were named as:

Family members (16)

  • Yousra Sergawi 50 years old female wife of Muhammad Taha killed
  • Heba Taqiqa 20 years old female daughter of Muhammad Taqiqa killed
  • Maryam Barakat 20 years old female Taha's wife killed
  • Khadija Taqiqa 6 years old female daughter of Samer killed
  • Iman Taqiqa 4 years old female daughter of Samer killed
  • Tasneem Taqiqa 5 years old female daughter of Samer killed
  • Widad 45 years old female Sadiq's wife killed
  • Muhammad Taha Taqiqa 55 years old male injured
  • Taha Taqiqa 26 years old male the son of Muhammad Taha Taqaqa killed
  • Akram Taqiqa 14 years old male the son of Muhammad Taha Taqaqa injured
  • Hamza Teqiqa 4 years old male the son of Muhammad Taha Taqaqa injured
  • Saba Taqiqa 14 years old female daughter of Muhammad Taqiqa injured
  • Fatima Taqiqa 20 years old female daughter of Muhammad Taha injured
  • Aya Sophia Samer Taqiqa 1 years old female killed
  • Sadiq Taqiqa Ibn Abdul Latif, 50 years old injured
  • Samer Taqiqa male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    6 – 8
  • (3–4 children3 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    9–11
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Syrian Regime Armed Forces, Russian Armed Forces

Sources (50) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (27) [ collapse]

  • Civil Defense members carry the body of a victim to an ambulance following strikes on Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Al Jazeera News)
  • Civil Defense members carry the body of a victim following strikes on Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Al Modon News)
  • Sisters Khadija, Iman and Tasnim Taqiqa, who were among those killed in the bombing on Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Al Araby News)
  • Images of the victims of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @SbmjMS3nXS7DzvE)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic Images of the victims of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @alkhattabirw)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic Images of the victims of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @alkhattabirw)
  • Taha Taqiqa, killed three days after his wedding in strikes on the village of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @Alassaf1977)
  • Civil Defense members carry the body of a victim to an ambulance following strikes on Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @YZaatreh)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic Images of the victims of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @samir_tateen)
  • Destruction caused by the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @samir_tateen)
  • Destruction caused by the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @samir_tateen)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Graphic Images of the children victims of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @Malek45655762)
  • Civil Defense members carry the body of a victim following strikes on Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @AFPar)
  • Destruction caused by the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @Sharif199629)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Aya Sophia Taqiqa died along with her siblings in the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Al Jazeera)
  • Aya Sophia Taqiqa died along with her siblings in the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Al Jazeera)
  • Iman Samer Taqiqa died along with her siblings in the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by @Gurbtwatan)
  • Iman Samer Taqiqa died along with her siblings in the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Thiqa News Agency via Facebook)
  • A father bids farewell to his daughter and puts her in Eid clothes before her burial #Martyr Aya Taqiqa Martyr Aya joins her brothers in Jannat-ul-Firdaws
  • Civil Defense members carry a victim of the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Syrian Civil Defense)
  • Civil Defense members search the rubble following the bombing of Ihsem on July 18, 2021. (Image posted by Syrian Civil Defense)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A harsh night stained with the blood of civilians in the town of Ihsem, south of Idlib, filled with cries of pain and separation, a massacre by the regime forces and Russia added to their list of crimes that resulted in 7 deaths (3 children and 4 women) and 9 injuries, most of them children and women, and the criminal is at large without accountability.
  • "Maryam and Taha" is a tale of the Syrian tragedy with a sad ending. They were the victims of the Ihsem massacre, south of Idlib, last night, a story of pain and separation similar to what the Syrians have been experiencing for ten years. Watch their story in the video... #not_a_target
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    After hard work and a search that lasted more than 24 hours, the Syrian Civil Defense teams managed at dawn today, Monday, July 19, to retrieve the body of the 4-year-old girl, Iman Taqiqa, from under the rubble. (3 children and 4 women) and 9 others were wounded, including 4 children and 3 women.
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Aya wears Eid clothes. She wears it instead of a shroud. Aya departed due to her injuries to stay with her sisters Iman, Khadija and Tasneem forever. The four sisters were victims of the #Ahssam massacre, which was committed by the regime forces and Russia on the night of July 18, With two hands trembling forcibly, and a voice choking with sadness, the father called her and put her in the Eid dress. Not only her father suffers, but everyone who has a conscience suffers. #not_a_targ

Syrian Regime Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    6 – 8
  • (3–4 children3 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    9–11
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Syrian Regime Armed Forces, Russian Armed Forces

Sources (50) [ collapse]