Investigations

Investigations

Denmark admits role in Nato airstrikes on Libya that killed 14 civilians in 2011

Investigation between Airwars, Altinget and The Guardian tracked down the victims
In collaboration with The Guardian and Altinget
Visual Investigation
A still image from Airwars' model of the attack

December 7, 2023

Killed in a press vest – evidence of Israeli responsibility for attack on journalists in Lebanon

On October 13th, 2023, a group of seven journalists in Lebanon was struck by two missiles in 37 seconds, killing a Reuters journalist. A forensic visual analysis finds Israeli tank fire caused the death.
In collaboration with AFP
Open Source Investigation
Palestinians inspect the ruins of Watan Tower destroyed in Israeli airstrikes in Gaza city, on October 8, 2023 (Wafa).

November 21, 2023

No safe place – tracking civilian harm in southern Gaza

Airwars review finds at least 127 civilian harm allegations in 'safe zone' in first week after evacuation order.
As reported on by NPR
Open Source Investigation

October 16, 2023

Did Israel bomb a civilian evacuation route in Gaza?

Airwars works with the Financial Times to forensically analyse an attack that killed at least a dozen Palestinians fleeing northern Gaza to safety.
In collaboration with the Financial Times
Open Source Investigation

September 8, 2023

A year of the Shahed

How Russia turned to a cheap Iranian-made suicide drone to terrorise civilian populations and damage infrastructure across Ukraine

In collaboration with Der Spiegel
Open Source Investigation
A still from the Russian Ministry of Defence shows a soldier in Ukraine launching reconnaissance drones

July 6, 2023

The new Russian drone linked to Iran-backed factory

Airwars investigation with the Financial Times finds the facility at the centre of Russo-Iranian UAV partnership recruiting specialist engineers and Farsi speakers
In collaboration with The Financial Times
Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited Bucha, where he talked to local residents and journalists. President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited the city of Bucha in the Kyiv region, where mass killings of civilians took place during the occupation by Russian troops.

June 20, 2023

Will German electronics end up in Russian drones?

Investigation by Airwars and Der Spiegel reveals German components exported to Russian drone manufacturer, even after the beginning of the war in Ukraine
In collaboration with Der Spiegel

April 4, 2023

Only official civilian victim of UK’s bombing campaign against IS appears not to exist

In eight years of bombing ISIS in Iraq and Syria, the UK says it has killed precisely one civilian. For two years, Airwars and The Guardian sought to find the victim. While searching for a civilian killed, we uncovered a mystery.
In collaboration with The Guardian
Visual Investigation

March 21, 2023

The hidden casualties of Britain’s war

In eight years of bombing the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, the United Kingdom has only accepted responsibility for the death of a single civilian. An Airwars and The Guardian investigation goes in search of the victims the British government doesn't want to acknowledge.
In collaboration with The Guardian
Visual Investigation

January 23, 2023

‘Waiting to happen’

A year ago, the Islamic State launched its largest attack in years - a daring jailbreak in which 500 people died. This immersive article reconstructs that night - and the American mistakes that made it more likely.
In collaboration with VICE News

September 20, 2022

ISIS breakout at US-backed prison followed years of warnings

In January 2022, the Islamic State attacked a prison in northern Syria. In the first of two documentaries, Airwars and VICE News explain what happened.
In collaboration with VICE News
Visual Investigation

June 13, 2022

A year on, Airwars investigation into Afrin hospital attack reveals crucial details

A horrifying attack on a hospital in the Syrian city of Afrin left 19 people dead – and the perpetrators are still unknown.

May 4, 2022

Counting the Dead in Ukraine

A longstanding mechanism for verifying casualties of the Ukraine conflict have been subsumed by the scale of carnage since Russia’s February invasion.
In collaboration with Newlines
Visual Investigation

April 12, 2022

Anatomy of a Russian cluster munition strike

Airwars examined a single Russian cluster munition strike on a blood donation centre and hospital, which may have caused a 350 metre span of damage, in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv

April 7, 2022

Counting the casualties in Ukraine – an interview with the UN Monitoring Mission

Why is the United Nations figure for the number of civilians killed in Ukraine so much lower than other estimates? Uladzimir Shcherbau, head of the UN civilian casualty monitoring team in the country, explains the challenges.
In collaboration with The Independent

March 22, 2022

How Russia is using tactics from the Syrian playbook in Ukraine

Entire settlements reduced to rubble, attacks on civilian targets and the bombing of refugee exit routes were all part of Moscow’s brutal Syria campaign
In collaboration with The Guardian

March 15, 2022

Civilian status in the Ukraine conflict: a rough guide

Do citizens who take up arms to resist Russian invasion lose protected status? A layperson's guide to the lines between civilians, militants and soldier.

March 3, 2022

Airwars launches interactive Ukraine population density map

The map is designed for researchers seeking to understand how heavily populated Ukrainian neighbourhoods targeted by Russia are

February 21, 2022

New documents reveal fresh concerns about the Coalition’s system for investigating civilian harm

Newly released documents allow fresh evaluation of how seriously the US military took reports of civilian harm. The findings suggest not very.
In collaboration with Responsible Statecraft
Open Source Investigation

February 8, 2022

Who killed Ahmed and Youssef?

When two Iraqi holidaymakers were killed in the Kurdish region of the country, the finger of blame turned to Turkish strikes. But this investigation finds a roadside bomb was the more likely cause.

December 18, 2021

Trump and Biden’s secret Afghanistan air campaigns revealed

Almost 800 previously secret US airstrikes in Afghanistan during 2020 and 2021 are revealed, as US military declassifies data.

December 10, 2021

Gaza and Syria: A Tale of Two Israeli Air Wars

New Airwars research finds that 10 times more civilians were killed in 11 days of Israel’s bombing of Gaza than in the entirety of its 8-year campaign in Syria
In collaboration with Newlines

September 24, 2021

Five more Afghan strikes the US should apologise for

The US government has admitted the last drone strike of the Afghan war killed an entire family. Why stop there?

September 6, 2021

Tens of thousands of civilians likely killed by US in ‘Forever Wars’

A minimum of 22,000 civilians have been killed directly by US airstrikes since the start of the War on Terror in 2001, analysis finds.
Featured in The Guardian

August 10, 2021

Pentagon wrongly admitted killing 21 civilians in Iraq and Syria slain by allies

Allied nations almost certainly killed them. So why did the Defense Department tell Congress that the US was responsible?
In collaboration with The Intercept
Visual Investigation

July 28, 2021

Countdown to the airstrike: the moment Israeli forces hit al-Jalaa tower, Gaza

What would you do if you had minutes to leave your home forever? Residents of a Gaza apartment block recall the frantic moments before it turned to rubble
In collaboration with The Guardian

March 20, 2021

NATO Killed Civilians in Libya. It’s Time to Admit It.

The alliance bombing campaign had a devastating toll—but, a decade after the war, leaders have still not taken responsibility.
In collaboration with Foreign Policy

March 19, 2021

The secret talks that nearly saved Gaddafi

During Libya's 2011 civil war, Norway came close to brokering a brokering deal that would have seen Colonel Gaddafi step aside. So why did the United States and France oppose it?
In collaboration with The Independent

March 18, 2021

Ten years after the Libyan revolution, victims wait for justice

NATO members still refuse to discuss potential civilian harm from their strikes a decade after intervening against Gaddafi.

November 18, 2020

The Credibles: How Airwars secured the most comprehensive locational data on civilian harm ever released by the US military

The release is a major breakthrough in transparency and could help Iraqis and Syrians finally secure apologies and even reparations for the death of family members
In collaboration with The Washington Post
A March 2017 airstrike during the battle for Mosul against Islamic State. While the US-led Coalition has admitted almost 1,400 civilian deaths during the war, European allies have remained almost silent about their own responsibility. (Via Reuters/ Alaa Al-Marjani)

March 15, 2020

Europe’s shame: Claims by key allies of no civilian harm in war against ISIS exposed

Key European allies are denying dozens of civilian deaths from their own actions - even where the US-led Coalition finds such cases to be credible.
In collaboration with the BBC

Investigations in partnership with