Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

USYEM071-B

Incident date

April 30, 2012

Location

زنجبار‎, Zinjibar, Abyan, Yemen

Geolocation

13.129059, 45.380422 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

An alleged US airstrike struck a vehicle killing at least three supposed Al Qaeda fighters around Zinjibar in Abyan Province on April 30, 2012. At the moment, there are no reports of civilian harm.

The Associated Press was informed by a Yemeni military official that the airstrike was one of many that took place that day.

The lowest estimate was provided by the Associated Press, putting the number killed at three. CNN provides the highest death count estimates of 7 though it groups this number with another attack in Lawder, which reportedly resulted in four militants killed.

On June 20th, a jihadist website reported that Muhammad Fazi al Harasheh, aka Abu Hammam al Zarqawi, had died in a drone strike on a vehicle. Al Zarqawi was the nephew of former al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi, killed by the US in 2006. Initial reports suggested he had been killed by a landmine.

Although the precise date of his death is unknown, the April 30th strikes appear to most closely match the description. The Long War Journal reported a militant statement as saying: “They were unable to kill him in the battles, so they sent spies to guide them to him. A drone came to bomb the car in which he and one of the brother were riding, and so his pure soul went to its maker.” With this information, it is unclear whether al Zarqawi was killed in this incident or another incident that occurred on the same day (USYEM070-B), since he was known to operate in Abyan province which Zinjibar and Lawder are both a part of.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident only mention the town of Zinjibar (زنجبار‎), in the governorate Abyan (أبين‎). The generic coordinates for the town of Zinjibar (زنجبار‎) are: 13.129059, 45.380422. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    No
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3

Sources (3) [ collapse]

US Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    No
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3

Sources (3) [ collapse]