Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

RS3296

Incident date

March 17, 2018

Location

زملكا, Zamalka, Damascus, Syria

Geolocation

33.5261, 36.35385 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

At least 30 and as many as 71 civilians were reportedly killed in an alleged Russian or Syrian regime forces airstrike on Zamalka on March 17th, 2018, according to local media sources.

Al Modon news said “The massacre occurred as hundreds of civilians flocked from the city of Zamalka to the city of Hamouriya, which was controlled by the militias of the regime, on Thursday. The militias had designated a crossing point for the passage of civilians to areas controlled by the regime. A source from Zamalka told the cities: “The victims were killed on the road between Zamalka and Hamouriya.”

Syria TV said quoting “the director of the news site Jobar Mohammed Abu Yaman who told Syria TV that the number of civilian casualties exceeded 60 dead and dozens of injuries so far, and that a large number of bodies of victims are still lying on the ground because of the continued shelling, as confirmed by the ambulance teams that went to the place.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that “30 citizens were killed in raids by warplanes on areas in Zamalka city.”

Zaman Al Wasel said “Warplanes committed [a massacre] in the city of Zamalka, during which dozens of civilians and hundreds of wounded, as a result of a missile hitting a gathering of densely populated residential areas in the city center in Eastern Ghouta.”

Step News Agency, Sky News Arabia, Zaman Al Wasel and @Wesal_TV added that the majority of victims are women and children.

A few resources mentioned that civilians had gathered earlier in Zamalka to flee many towns in Eastern Ghouta that was under constant shelling, to regime-controlled areas before being killed by the airstrike.

The death toll spanned from 30 as reported by Al Arabiya to as many as 71 according to Sky News Arabia.  Erem News reported that ‘dozens’ of civilians were injured as a result of this airstrike.

Russian forces were blamed for the attack by Smart News Agency, Step News, Syria TV and Al Modon, while Zaman Al Wasel and Erem News reported that the Syrian regime forces were responsible.

According to Zaman Al Wasel, a media activist was quoted saying “I could not bear the scenes of body parts scattered in the streets. I could not determine their numbers or distinguish between the martyr and the injured, but I do not exaggerate if I say that there are hundreds of victims.”

Also from Zaman Al Wasel, “According to activist Anas Al-Khouli, a survivor of the massacre, a guided missile dropped by a Russian plane at 7:05 am on Saturday targeted a gathering of residents in the crowded residential buildings, which resulted in the fall of dozens of civilians, mostly women and children.”

He continued saying “”The scene is described as the Day of Resurrection, I could not bear the scenes of body parts scattered in the streets. I could not determine their numbers and distinguish between the martyr and the wounded, but do not exaggerate if we say that there are hundreds of victims.”

Al Masry Al Youm said that “More than 10,000 civilians fled early Saturday to regime-held areas through the Hamouriyeh crossing.”

The incident occured at 7:05 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    30 – 71
  • (1 child2 women27 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    20–100
  • 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

Sources (20) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A child killed in an alleged Russian forces or Syrian regime forces airstrike on Zamalka, March 17th, 2018

Russian Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Syrian Regime Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    30 – 71
  • (1 child2 women27 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    20–100
  • 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

Sources (20) [ collapse]