Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

RS3052

Incident date

February 21, 2018

Location

سقبا, Saqba, Damascus, Syria

Geolocation

33.519286, 36.382427 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

Up to 15 civilians, including three children and three women, were killed along with several wounded as the town of Saqba, eastern Ghouta, Damascus, was struck by air raids, local media reported, though culpability was contested.

Like many other towns in eastern Ghouta, it was the third day in a row that Saqba was being struck. Masrawy News reported that eastern Ghouta was struck by both “air, missile and artillery fire.” Images from Saqba following the incident depicted how large parts of the city was left in rubble, including residential buildings and a hospital.

While Zaman al-Wasl reported the lowest death toll, two, most reports noted at least four fatalities. However, the following day, February 22nd, the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SN4HR) reported that the strikes had claimed “at least 15 civilians, including three children and three women, due to intensive shelling by Syrian/Russian warplanes on the city”.

According to al-Araby, five civilians were left wounded while others reported about “several” injured.

Besides from air raids, multiple reports mentioned that helicopters had launched explosive barrels. For example, al-Araby, who cited local sources in eastern Ghouta said that “the helicopter flew explosive barrels at the field hospital in the town of Saqba, hit the wall, which led to the hospital out of work, and wounding two medical staff were injured.”

Marshad al-Hassaka, who blamed Russian warplanes, said that residential neighbourhoods had been hit by rocket-propelled grenades, while Masrawy News counted four concussion rockets.

Sources were unclear in terms of culpability, as blame was apportioned to either Russia, the Syrian regime – or both – across the sources. It should be noted that Masrawy News blamed both Assad and Turkish warplanes – a rather rare allegation for eastern Ghouta.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 15
  • (3 children3 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–5
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (20) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (12) [ collapse]

  • Wounded civilians are being evacuated by the civil defence members in the immediate aftermath of the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 (via Syria Civil Defence)
  • Large parts of Saqba, Damascus, were left in rubble following the contested shelling on February 21st, 2018 (via HalabTodayTV)
  • A seriously injured man is being evacuated from the rubble following the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 (via Syria Civil Defence)
  • Aftermath in Saqba, Damascus, following the contested shelling on February 21st, 2018 (via HalabTodayTV)
  • Large parts of Saqba, Damascus, were left in rubble following the contested shelling on February 21st, 2018 (via Khaled Jomaa)
  • Large parts of Saqba, Damascus, were left in rubble following the contested shelling on February 21st, 2018 (via Khaled Jomaa)
  • The contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, continued on its third day on February 21st. This image depicts the shelling from one of these days (via Syfree23)
  • Large parts of Saqba, Damascus, were left in rubble following the contested shelling on February 21st, 2018 (via Damasky Agency)
  • The civil defence evacuating wounded civilians from the rubble following the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 (via Shehab Agency)
  • A local hospital was destroyed by the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 (via GMC)
  • A wounded civilian in the rubble following the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 ((via Damascus Media Center)
  • Aftermath of the contested shelling of Saqba, Damascus, February 21st, 2018 ((via Damascus Media Center)

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Russian Armed Forces

Russia has not reported any strikes between February 1st - 28th 2018.


Syrian Regime Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 15
  • (3 children3 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–5
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (20) [ collapse]