Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

RS4248

Incident date

December 16, 2019

Location

معرشمارين, Ma’ar Shmareen, Idlib, Syria

Airwars assessment

As many as five civilians, including two women and a child, were killed and dozens of civilians, mostly women and children, were injured following alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on the town of Ma’ar Shmareen, Idlib Governorate on December 16th, 2019, according to multiple sources. The names of those killed and injured indicate several of the victims came from two families.

Two sources, The Syrian Network for Human Rights and The Syrian Human Rights Committee, reported that the girl Ikhlas Abdul Aziz al Mustafa and the women Jamila Jum’a al Mustafa and Fatima Mahmoud al Mustafa were killed. Additional sources also reported the death of two women and a child but did not provide their identities. The Syrian Human Rights Committee reported that five people were killed in total, in what it called a “Russian bombing”.

Dozens of civilians were reported to have been injured. Twitter user, @iA6TWquU3yvk2RK, named some of them as: Khadija Al-Mustafa, 4, Baraa Al-Mustafa, 25, Zainab Al-Hassan, 6, and Badi’ Al-Hassan, 7. Those injured were said to be mostly women and children.

The majority of the sources reported that planes of the Russian airforce carried out the strikes. A correspondent for Al-Jisr said Russian warplanes had used “vacuum missiles” to target civilian houses in the town which led to “widespread destruction in the area”.

Four sources said they were unable to identify whether the aircraft were Russian or Syrian. Two sources said Syrian regime helicopters carried out the strike using barrel bombs. Zaman Al Wasl reported the barrel bombs had targeted a secondary school in the town.

In a video posted to the organisations’ Facebook page, members of the Syrian White Helmets could be seen recovering the body of a young girl from a field.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (5)

Family members (2)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3 – 5
  • (1 child2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–12
  • 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 (22) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (14) [ collapse]

  • Alleged Russian strikes on Ma’ar Shmareen, Dec 16th 2019.
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • Aftermath of alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on Ma’ar Shmareen on December 16th, 2019 (via Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).
  • An image that accompanied a Tweet about alleged Russian or Syrian regime airstrikes on the town of Ma’ar Shmareen, Idlib Governorate on December 16th, 2019. (Uploaded by @anasanas84)

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
    3 – 5
  • (1 child2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–12
  • 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 (22) [ collapse]