Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

RS3933

Incident date

July 22, 2019

Location

معرة النعمان, Ma’aret Al Nu’man, Idlib, Syria

Airwars assessment

Up to 50 civilians were reported killed in airstrikes on Ma’aret Al Nu’man, Idlib, on July 22nd. A further 10 to 100 were allegedly injured in the incident.

In December 2019, the New York Times published an investigation into the event, which it said was perpetrated by the Russian Air Force.

While initial sources cited one to two civilians killed in the attack, later sources documented much higher figures as understanding of the events unfolded.

Smart News stated that “the toll of the massacre of the city of Ma’arat al-Nu’man in Idlib killed 39 people and wounded 60”, and Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported “a massacre that left 137 casualties and wounded until now.”

The Syrian Network for Human Rights stated that of those killed, four were children, and four were women.

In a video released by Smart News, the reporter documented “42 civilians killed – 39 of them named and three unknown, and about 80 civilians injured.”

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also documented the death of “two unidentified gunmen” in the incident, stating that the number of people killed “in the biggest massacre since the beginning of the violent escalation at the end of last April” was 38 in total.

Meanwhile, Shaam News reported that “Russian and Assad (Syrian ) warplanes raided and attacked civilians, causing a terrible massacre following the targeting of the popular market in the city of Ma’arat al-Nu’man. More than 30 martyrs, including children and women, and a civilian defense force were killed. In addition, more than 50 were wounded.”

Meanwhile, an early report by Syria Civil Defense stated that “15 civilians, including a civil defense volunteer [Amir Al-Bunni], were killed and 50 others were injured by an indiscriminate attack on civilian houses in the town of Ma’arat al-Nu’man in the village of Idlib this morning, in eight raids by Russian warplanes.”

The highest figure was reported by Zaman Al-Wasl which said that 50 people were killed in this attack. Local sources named 40 fatalities including six children and five women.

Twenty-three sources attributed the attack to Russian forces, while nine others did not positively attribute blame, and two sources named Syria as the belligerent responsible for the airstrikes. Three other sources named both Russia and Syria in reporting the incident.

In December 2019, the New York Times published transcripts of voicelogs which it said proved Russia was responsible for the attack. According to the Times between 23 and 42 people died in  four strikes. The first at 8.35am destroyed a building, with a second strike at 8.44am targeting the same location. A nearby building was struck at 8.54am, with an additional building targeted at 8.58am.

A report by the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria covering the period between July 2019 to January 2020 said that this attack killed at least 43 civilians including three girls and one boy, and injuring at least 109 others including 18 children and 15 women. The report said that “most of the victims suffered severe injuries with some brought to hospital decapitated, badly burned or without limbs.”

According to the report released on March 2nd, 2020, “Consistent with witnesses testimony, early warning reports and flight spotters reports indicated that at least two Russian fixed wing-aircrafts, departed from Hmemim airbase on 22 July at around 8:03 a.m. and circled near the target area at the same time of the attack. The Commission further obtained flight communication intercepts conducted in the Russian language for the period between 07:40 and 09:59 a.m. The communications confirm that, between 8:17 and 8:35 a.m., two Russian aircraft operated in Idlib airspace, and reported on the progress of on-going aerial attacks in Idlib.”

Human Rights Watch published a report in October 2020 highlighting this incident among 46 other incidents in which Russia and/or the regime were involved. “On July 22, 2019, an attack between 8 and 8:30 a.m. damaged a smaller market area about 370 to 400 meters from the main market, with stalls for vegetables and breakfast dishes. Muhammad Hariri, an ambulance driver for the SCD, said he arrived at the site and drove five people to the hospital who had been wounded by another munition that hit a four-story apartment building next to the market. He said that as he was driving back to the market from the hospital, he heard a second explosion. Two SCD volunteers had stayed behind, and one, Mahmoud Zikra, said that eight minutes after the first strike, another hit, collapsing two more three-story buildings, wounding himself and killing his colleague, Amir al-Bunee. Zikra said the second explosion sent metal fragments into his hand and back.”

However, the Russian Ministry of Defence denied any responsibility to this incident. Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Colonel General Sergei Rudskoy held a briefing for media representatives on July 29th, 2019 and said accusing Russian forces of involvement was part of a a disinformation campaign to discredit Russia’s actions in the Idlib de-escalation zone. He said that the market is easy to find on the map of the Maaret al-Numan city and emphasized that Russian aviation was not used in this area on July 22 and did not fly there. He also claimed that, on July 24th and 26th, Russian drones conducted reconnaissance of the sites and the surrounding area to check the destruction claims and found the area to be intact.

 

 

The incident occured between 8:35 am and 8:58 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (5)

Family members (5)

Family members (2)

Family members (2)

Family members (3)

Family members (2)

Family members (2)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    40 – 51
  • (6 children5–7 women29 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    10–109
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (70) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (77) [ collapse]

  • The aftermath of an alleged Russian or regime airstrike on civilian homes and a market in Ma’arat Al Nu’man, July 22nd (via Syria Civil Defense)
  • Image caption translation: "15 civilians, including a civil defense volunteer, were killed and 50 others were injured by an indiscriminate attack on civilian houses in the town of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in the village of Idlib this morning, in eight raids by Russian warplanes." (via Syria Civil Defense)
  • Image caption translation: "15 civilians, including a civil defense volunteer, were killed and 50 others were injured by an indiscriminate attack on civilian houses in the town of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in the village of Idlib this morning, in eight raids by Russian warplanes." (via Syria Civil Defense)
  • Image caption translation: "15 civilians, including a civil defense volunteer, were killed and 50 others were injured by an indiscriminate attack on civilian houses in the town of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in the village of Idlib this morning, in eight raids by Russian warplanes." (via Syria Civil Defense)
  • Image Caption Translation: "Amir was martyred during the response to the aerial bombardment that hit the Ma'arat al-Nu'man market this morning." (via Syria Civil Defense)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib." (via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "20 martyrs as a result of the initial and dozens of wounded and missing and the rubble and rubble under the rubble as a result of the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man southern countryside Idlib" (Via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "Civil defense teams can extract two children alive from the rubble of their house after the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in southern countryside Idlib" (via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "Civil defense teams can extract two children alive from the rubble of their house after the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in southern countryside Idlib" (via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "Civil defense teams can extract two children alive from the rubble of their house after the bombing of Russian warplanes with rocket rockets residential neighborhoods of the city of Ma'arat al-Nu'man in southern countryside Idlib" (via Macro Media Center)
  • Image Caption Translation: "Amir al Benni, a member of Civil Defense- Ma’arat al Nu`man center, from Ifra village which is administratively a part of Wadi Barada in Western Ghouta in west of Damascus suburbs governorate, was killed as fixed- wing warplanes we believe were Russian fired missiles on the vegetables market in Ma’aret al Numan market in Idlib governorate southern suburbs, while he was aiding the victims of previous bombing by the same forces, on July 22." (via Syrian Network for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: Rise in death toll of massacre committed by Russian forces in Ma’arat al Nu`man city in Idlib, on July 22 SNHR: death toll of massacre in Ma’aret al Numan city in Idlib governorate southern suburbs rose to at least 32 civilians, including four children and four women, as fixed- wing warplanes we believe were Russian fired missiles on the city, on July 22, 2019." (via Syrian Network for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: "Pictures by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights show the substantial damage caused by the Russian strikes which targeted a market and residential neighborhoods in Maarrat Al-Nu'man city and caused a massacre that left 137 casualties and wounded until now" (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: "Pictures by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights show the substantial damage caused by the Russian strikes which targeted a market and residential neighborhoods in Maarrat Al-Nu'man city and caused a massacre that left 137 casualties and wounded until now" (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: "Pictures by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights show the substantial damage caused by the Russian strikes which targeted a market and residential neighborhoods in Maarrat Al-Nu'man city and caused a massacre that left 137 casualties and wounded until now" (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: "Pictures by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights show the substantial damage caused by the Russian strikes which targeted a market and residential neighborhoods in Maarrat Al-Nu'man city and caused a massacre that left 137 casualties and wounded until now" (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights)
  • Image Caption: "Many still buried under the rubble.. White Helmets statement regarding the abhorrent attack on civilians of Ma`arat al Nu`man southern Idlib" (via Syria.liveuamap)
  • Caption translation: Watch the moment a baby was recovered from the rubble in Maarat al-Nu'man.
  • Video Caption: "Our correspondent Ibrahim Sweden and the most prominent developments in the city of Maarat al-Nu'man in rural Idlib "We are now inside ma`arat Al numan , we can see SCD members looking for living people under rubble, the raids lead to dozens of killed and wounded people, one of SCD members killed after another raid in the same place"
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Caption translation: The child is alive and was recovered from the rubble, of Maarat al-Nu`man massacre.
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A child rescued from the rubble after an alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrike on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via@jabalybaraa)
  • Caption translation: Amir al-Bunni, a new martyr from the civil defense volunteer today in Maarat al-Numan as a result of the bombing of the Assad forces.
  • Caption translation: Watch the destruction inside the popular market of Maarat Al-Numan in Idlib countryside, as a result of Russian airstrikes.
  • Caption translation: A medic from the White Helmets under the rubble as a result of a Russian raid on Maarat al-Nu`man and his companions continue to rescue the victims.
  • Caption translation: Eleven people were killed and others injured as a result of air strikes by Syrian regime warplanes on a popular market in the city of Maarat al-Numan in the Idlib countryside.
  • Caption translation: Aerial footage shows the extent of the destruction caused by the Russian warplanes bombing the popular market in the city of Maarat al-Numan in Idlib. The death toll rose to more than 30 martyrs Although the Russian Defense Ministry denied responsibility for the crime, we confirm that the Russian planes committed the massacre.
  • Caption translation: 31 martyrs and dozens of wounded in the bombing of the Assad gang and # Russia on Maarat Al-Nu`man, and the toll is expected to rise!
  • Caption translation: Putin and Al-Asad killed him today in Maarat al-Numan, along side his mother, father and brothers.
  • Caption translation: The Maarat al-Nu`man massacre today. Today I became certain, for the millionth time, that the whole world is dirty and trivial And a billion times I became sure that there is no state whose government is good.
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Caption translation: Activists: More than 40 martyrs, and the toll is higher, as a result of the Russian warplanes bombing a popular market in Maarat al-Numan.
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A child killed as a result of alleged Russian airstrikes of a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @Wesal_TV)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An injured civilian as a result of alleged Russian airstrikes of a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @Wesal_TV)
  • Caption translation: City of martyrs. This city that embraced all of the rebellious Syria and opened its homes to all the displaced, and shared bread and olives with them, today offers 30 martyrs and 100 wounded in Russian criminal bombings in front of the world and Arab peoples.
  • Caption translation: A Syrian photographer walks amid the rubble of the massacre, after the news of the death of his father in Russian/Assadi bombing this morning.
  • Caption translation: A neighborhood in the area where the bombs of Assad and his Russian ally fell, in Maarat Al-Nu`man, rural # Idlib ... Aerial photography with a drone The photo was taken on the day of the massacre, in which more than 50 civilians were killed.
  • Caption translation: A map showing the location of a double Russian aerial attack on the city of Maarat al-Nu`man in Idlib, causing a massacre in which 39 civilians were killed, including 4 children and 7 women, on July 22, 2019.
  • A map showing the location of a double Russian aerial attack on the city of Maarat al-Nu`man in Idlib, causing the death of 39 civilians, including four children and seven women, on July 22nd, 2019. (image and numbers via SNHR)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A SCD volunteer carrying a child recovered from the rubble after alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @ajmubasher).
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A body under the rubble after alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @ajmubasher).
  • Aftermath of alleged Syrian regime airstrikes on a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man. (via @ajanet_ar).
  • Aftermath of alleged Syrian regime airstrikes on a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man. (via @ajanet_ar).
  • Aftermath of alleged Syrian regime airstrikes on a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man. (via @ajanet_ar).
  • Aftermath of alleged Syrian regime airstrikes on a popular market in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man. (via @ajanet_ar).
  • Drone image of an area hit by alleged Russian and Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @zamanalwsl)
  • Drone image of an area hit by alleged Russian and Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @zamanalwsl)
  • Drone image of an area hit by alleged Russian and Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via @zamanalwsl)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    SCD volunteers recovering bodies of civilians from the rubble after alleged Russian and Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Enab baladi)
  • Destruction caused by alleged Russian airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Ebaa news)
  • Destruction caused by alleged Russian airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Ebaa news)
  • Destruction caused by alleged Russian airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Ebaa news)
  • Destruction caused by alleged Russian airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Ebaa news)
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • Victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • Victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • One of the victims of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • Amir al-Bunni, SCD, was killed as a result of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    One of the victims of Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma'aret Al-Nu'man on July 22nd, 2019. (via Al Maara Lover).
  • A drone image shared by the Russian MoD claiming that area that was allegedly targeted in Ma'aret Al-Nu'man was intact and that accusing Russia is part of a disinformation campaign. (By the Russian MoD)

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
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    40 – 51
  • (6 children5–7 women29 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    10–109
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attackers
    Russian Armed Forces, Syrian Regime Armed Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (70) [ collapse]