Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

USYEMTr079-C

Incident date

April 23, 2017

Location

الضلعه, Al Dhula'ah, Shabwa, Yemen

Geolocation

14.36518, 47.001057 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

On April 24th 2017, Pentagon spokesperson Captain Jeff Davis stated that a US strike had killed eight AQAP militants in Shabwa governorate on the previous day, confirming earlier reports that an afternoon US drone strike in Al Dhula’ah, in the Al Said area, had killed eight people. Several sources reported, however, that at least three – and potentially all of those killed – were civilians.

Several sources reported that three civilians were killed in the attack, whom multiple sources named as cousins Mansour Salem Lahoul Al-Barasi Al-Awlaqi; Khaled bin Nasser Lahoul Al-Barasi Al-Awlaqi; and Nasser Muhammed Saeed Lahoul Al-Barasi Al-Awlaqi. According to one source, the cousins were members of the “Southern Resistance of Al Baras tribe”.

According to The Intercept, Mansour was “a former Yemeni Army lieutenant in his late thirties”, while, of his two 23-year-old cousins killed in the strike, Khalid was “home on vacation from Malaysia, where he was studying English”.

Sources differed on the exact circumstances of the reported civilian deaths.  According to Aden Al-Ghad, the cousins were driving behind a car carrying alleged AQAP militants, and were killed when a strike missed the AQAP vehicle and destroyed the civilian vehicle. Reuters reported that, according to residents and local sources, three civilians were killed “who happened to be passing nearby”.

Other sources, including AFP, suggested that the three civilians were killed in a second ‘double tap’ strike after having gone to the aid of those caught in a first strike.

The Intercept instead reported that the three men were at a security checkpoint at the time of the strike, when they were joined by a car full of five “local militants”, and were killed shortly after sending someone to fetch lunch.

According to multiple sources, the US drone strike took place at the Al-Saeed junction.  Most sources agreed that three AQAP militants were additionally killed in the strike, though several indicated that five had died.

However, speaking with The Intercept, Mansour Al-Awlaqi’s nephew, Ammar Salim Farid, denied that any of those killed were current AQAP members. “To be honest, the five people in the car had past links to [terror groups], but they had quit this movement two years ago,” he said.

Yemen Shabab named the dead alleged AQAP militants as Mohammed Awad Barasin; Shawky Awad Barasin; Abdullah Ali Barasin; Muhammad Ali Jaar; and Hamad Ali Jaar, and indicated that they were killed as they travelled to the Habban district.

Mohammed Awad Barasin was also reported to be the “second man” of AQAP in Shabwa governorate. The Pentagon told Fox News that he had “planned external attacks and coordinated the group’s movement of weapons and explosives”. However, Ammar Salim Farid Al-Awlaqi denied this, saying that Mohammed had been a member of both AQAP and the Islamic State, but had since left both groups.

Ammar told the Intercept that he heard the strike from his home. “We went to the cemetery and found Mansoor, Khalid, and Nasir, all but pieces of flesh [so] that we were not able to tell their appearances… It was a shock no human can accept and there’s anger at the U.S. government.”

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism later reported that, following The Intercept article, CENTCOM told the Bureau that “after a thorough review, they concluded the civilian casualty allegations from the strike were not credible”.

On April 24th 2017, the Pentagon announced that the US had carried out over eighty strikes in Yemen since February 28th 2017.

In its May 2018 annual civilian casualty report, the US Department of Defense stated that “there were credible reports of civilian casualties caused by U.S. military actions in Yemen against AQAP and ISIS during 2017”, but did not specify which specific actions these reports referred to.  Overall, the Department of Defense assessed that there were credible reports of “approximately 499 civilians killed and approximately 169 civilians injured during 2017”, as a result of US military actions in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and Yemen.

Responding to Airwars’ publication of its Yemen dataset and accompanying report in October 2020, CENTCOM dismissed all but two civilian harm claims under President Trump, asserting that “USCENTCOM conducted a thorough review of the information AirWars provided regarding allegations of potential civilian harm caused by USCENTCOM strikes in Yemen from 2017-2020… The bulk of the information asserted by AirWars, however, did not correspond with dates and locations of U.S. military strikes or raids in Yemen.   Other AirWars allegations either did not allege civilian harm or were not assessed as credible upon our review.”

The incident occured in the afternoon.

The victims were named as:

Family members (3)

Family members (3)

Family members (2)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3 – 8
  • (3–8 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3–8

Sources (39) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (8) [ collapse]

  • Khalid Nasir Abdullah Bin Lahul al-Barasi al-Awlaqi was reportedly killed in the April 23rd 2017 US drone, though several sources reported that he was a civilian (@alaqalaq, April 23rd 2017)
  • "This photo supplied by Ammar Salim Farid Alawlaqi shows Mansoor Allahwal Baras, killed in an April 23 drone strike, with a phrase attributed to the Prophet Muhammad that reads, “The eyes are shedding tears and the heart is in grief, and we will not say except what pleases our Lord. We belong to Allah and to Him we return.”" (The Intercept, May 19th 2017)
  • Mansour Salem Mansour bin Lahul Al-Barasi Al-Awlaqi was reportedly killed in the April 23rd 2017 US drone strike. Several sources reported that he was a civilian. (@alawalaq, April 23rd 2017)

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the Al Dhua’lia (الضلعه), in the vicinity of Habban (حبان) town. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Al Dhua’lia are: 14.36518, 47.001057.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the Al Dhua’lia (الضلعه), in the vicinity of Habban (حبان) town.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US Forces
  • US Forces position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No reason given
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None

Civilian casualty statements

US Forces
  • Nov 5, 2020
  • May 4, 2017
  • We can confirm that there was a US strike in Marib on April 19 as well as a strike in Shabwah on April 23. We are aware of the reports of CIVCAS allegations and are looking into them. Regards, CENTCOM

  • Following the Intercept piece, we followed up with US Central Command. They said that after a thorough review, they concluded the civilian casualty allegations from the strike were not credible.

  • Via email: U.S. Central Command (USCENTCOM) continues to focus on ways to minimize civilian casualties during its military operations. We assess or review all reports of civilian casualties because such assessments or reviews help us identify ways to improve our operations and counter misinformation and propaganda. We routinely share the results of every one of our assessments in Department of Defense (DoD) reports to Congress, including annual reports, many of which are publicly available. We also share the results of our assessments or reviews with the public via the USCENTCOM website and our statements to the media. Individuals wishing to understand U.S. military operations in Yemen more fully should consult these official sources of information. USCENTCOM conducted a thorough review of the information AirWars provided regarding allegations of potential civilian harm caused by USCENTCOM strikes in Yemen from 2017-2020. Of the information AirWars provided, one strike on September 14, 2017, was assessed to have caused injuries to two civilians. Also, as previously released by USCENTCOM to the public in February 2017, USCENTCOM acknowledged there may have been civilian casualties during a raid on January 29, 2017. The bulk of the information asserted by AirWars, however, did not correspond with dates and locations of U.S. military strikes or raids in Yemen. Other AirWars allegations either did not allege civilian harm or were not assessed as credible upon our review. Consistent with our mission, our authorities, and our obligations under the law of war, USCENTCOM will continue to conduct military actions in Yemen when required to protect the Nation and our allies and partners from al Qa’ida and ISIS terror cells that are committed to inflicting terror. In every strike and raid, we take careful measures to minimize civilian harm and take responsibility for our actions. When our military operations result in reports of civilian harm, we will continue to assess the credibility of such reports to help us identify ways to improve our operations and respond as appropriate.

Original strike reports

US Forces

WASHINGTON, April 24, 2017 — Coalition and U.S. strikes continue to aid progress against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq and Syria, and against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said here today.
Today is day 65 of the operation to liberate western Mosul in Iraq, he said, and yesterday Iraqi forces gained another 6 square kilometers along the forward line of troops on the axis of attack moving from the south toward Mosul’s old city.
Members of the Iraqi Emergency Response Division and the Federal Police maintained defensive positions along their eastern boundary and the Tigress River. The Counterterrorism Service also gained new ground and the Iraqi army’s 9th Division continued to defend positions west of Mosul. Clearing operations continue in eastern Mosul, Davis reported.
Supporting Iraq Operations
“The total number of munitions delivered since Oct. 17 in support of operations to liberate Mosul is 22,107,” he added.
The munitions destroyed total 259 vehicle-borne bombs, 638 buildings and facilities, 209 tunnels, 684 vehicles, 914 bunkers, 38 anti-aircraft artillery systems, 542 artillery and mortar systems, and 279 boats and barges, Davis said.
On April 23, coalition military forces conducted seven strikes consisting of 49 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS staging area, according to a statement by Operation Inherent Resolve officials.
Near Mosul, the officials said, six strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; destroyed 11 fighting positions, eight heavy machine guns, four rocket-propelled grenade systems, two ISIS-held buildings, an ISIS-held bridge and a vehicle-borne bomb; damaged 14 ISIS supply routes and a fighting position; and suppressed four rocket teams, three mortar teams and an ISIS tactical unit.
Operations in Syria
In the fight for Raqqa in Syria, the Pentagon spokesman said, Syrian Democratic Forces have liberated another 2 square kilometers in the Raqqa valley north and Tabqah areas, and in the Raqqa valley north on the western axis.
“The SDF is reporting large numbers of internally displaced persons fleeing ISIS-held areas around there,” Davis added, noting that ISIS does not control the Tabqah dam or the city but the city is almost entirely surrounded.
In Syria yesterday, according to an OIR statement, coalition military forces conducted 24 strikes consisting of 48 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes destroyed three ISIS wellheads. Near Palmyra, two strikes destroyed four fighting positions and two ISIS shipping containers.
Near Raqqa, seven strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions, a heavy machine gun, a tactical vehicle and an ISIS wellhead. And near Tabqah, 12 strikes engaged 10 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 12 fighting positions, a tactical vehicle, an ISIS vehicle, a heavy machine gun and a command-and-control node.
Yemen Operations
U.S. forces conducted a strike April 18 in the Ma’rib governorate against three al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, and another strike yesterday in the Shabwa governorate against eight al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, Davis said.
“Since February 28, we've conducted more than 80 precision strikes against AQAP militants, infrastructure, fighting positions and equipment, and we'll continue to conduct operations including strikes against known terrorists,” he added.
Davis said U.S. forces are conducting a series of sustained operations in Yemen against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to degrade the group's ability to coordinate external terror attack operations and limit their ability to hold territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen and use it as a safe haven for terror plotting.
Centcom is still assessing the results of the most recent strikes, he said.
(Follow Cheryl Pellerin on Twitter @PellerinDoDNews)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3 – 8
  • (3–8 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3–8

Sources (39) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI654

Incident date

April 19, 2017

Location

الثورة, Mosul: Thawra neighbourhood, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.34325, 43.09785 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Within 100m (via Coalition)

Airwars assessment

Multiple sources reported that more than 90 civilians died in a major incident in Al Thawra (Revolution) neighbourhood in Old Mosul. As Reuters noted, “Dozens of civilians were killed on Saturday by air strikes targeting homes in the Thawra district on the western side of Mosul, a neighborhood declared by Iraqi forces restored overnight by the Islamic state, local residents said.”

In June 2019 the Coalition accepted responsibility for this allegation of civilian harm – though conceded just one death. Its monthly civilian casualty report noted: “Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh fighting position. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed due to their proximity to the strike.” This was later declared by the Pentagon to have been a US action.

Local Facebook group Sawlf Ateka reported that fatalities had resulted from actions by several belligerents: “The bodies of civilians fill the streets of Al-Thawra district, on the right side of Mosul.” They allegedly died after sniper attacks, “terrorist attacks, or because of the indiscriminate bombardment of mortars, artillery and aerial bombardment by the security forces.”

Sources reported to Al Jazeera that “there are dozens of civilians under the rubble, [and] no one knows whether they were alive or dead because Iraqi forces prevented anyone from reaching these areas.”

Iraq Newspaper cited a senior official of the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior’s Rapid Response Force, who spoke of a “total destruction of more than 30 houses in the Thawra neighbourhood, including houses belonging to the region’s dignitaries.”

Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi and his father died after an airstrike was carried out in front of their house

It was also reported that Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa, a neurologist in the Al-Thawra neighborhood, also died together with his father and son.

Mosul News Now (local Facebook group) named Ahmed Shiite Aida Abu Doaa as one of the victims. He reportedly was Director of Accreditation Company Asia Cell and Sales Manager of North Sale Company. Local comparisons were made to of the “massacre” to the major incident in New Mosul neighbourhood, on March 17th-18th.

The Coalition provided Airwars with the location of this incident, accurate to within a 100 metre box.

In May 2020 in its annual civilian harm report to Congress, the Pentagon said this had been a US action.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi Adult male killed
  • Father of Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi Adult male killed

Family members (3)

  • Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Adult male killed
  • Father of Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Adult male killed
  • Son of Dr. Mohamed Mahmoud El Sheikh Issa Child male killed
  • Ahmed Shiite Aida Abu Doaa Adult male Director of Accreditation Company Asia Cell and Sales Manager of North Sale Company killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    90
  • (1 child3 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    Iraq Government Forces
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (6) [ collapse]

  • Abdel Wahab Talal Hadidi and his father allegedly died after an airstrike hit their neighbourhood in Old Mosul, on April 19th (via Sawl Ateka Facebook)
  • Dr. Mohammed al-Sheikh Issa, who used to be a neurologist, allegedly died in airstrikes on Old Mosul, together with his father and son (via Sawlf Ateka)
  • Ahmed Shit Aida Abu Doaa, reportedly died after airstrikes and shelling hit Revolution neighbourhood (via Mosul News Now)
  • Video showing the aftermath of the strikes
  • A second video showing the aftermath
  • Table from May 2020 Pentagon report to Congress, conceding additional US civilian harm events in Iraq and Syria during 2017.

Geolocation notes

Prior the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwas had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 36.34389,43.103399. In June 2019 the Coalition released the MGRS as 38SLF293237.

CJTF–OIR Declassified Assessment and Press Release

Attached to this civilian harm incident is the Pentagon's declassified assessment of this civilian harm allegation, obtained by Azmat Khan and the New York Times through Freedom of Information requests and lawsuits filed since March 2017, alongside the corresponding press release published by the Pentagon. Airwars is currently analysing the contents of each file, and will update our own assessments accordingly.

Declassified Assessment Press Release

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible / Substantiated
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    Killed by strike blast
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Al Thawra, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF293237
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 29, 2019
  • Jul 7, 2017
  • April 19, 2017, near Mosul, Iraq, via social media report: After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographic area that correspond to the report of civilian casualties.

  • Apr. 19, 2017, near Al Thawra, Iraq, via Airwars report. Coalition aircraft conducted an airstrike against a Daesh fighting position. Regrettably, one civilian was unintentionally killed due to their proximity to the strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For April 18th-19th the Coalition publicly stated: “Near Mosul, eight strikes engaged six ISIS tactical units, destroyed 11 fighting positions, six rocket-propelled grenade systems, five anti-air artillery systems, four medium machine guns, four VBIEDs, a weapons cache, a front-end loader, an ISIS vehicle, a command and control node; and suppressed four fighting positions, four ISIS supply routes and four ISIS tactical units.”

Iraq Government Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Iraq Government Forces
  • Iraq Government Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    90
  • (1 child3 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Known attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected attacker
    Iraq Government Forces
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr078

Incident date

April 18, 2017

Location

الطريق بين الحوطة و عزان, Road between Al Hawtah and Azzan, Shabwa, Yemen

Geolocation

14.351569, 47.418525 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Street level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Street

Airwars assessment

A US drone strike reportedly killed at least two alleged AQAP militants travelling in the Hotat al-Faqih Ali area of Mayfa’a district in Shabwa governorate, late on April 18th 2017. There were no known associated reports of civilian harm.

Though most local language social media sources and other media, such as Sahafahnet, reported that two men were killed in a car between Al-Houta and Azan, the Associated Press and Akhbaralaan reported that five alleged militants were killed in the strike. Andalou Agency, citing a local security official, was alone in saying that two vehicles were struck in Shabwa.

Several sources reported that the strike killed AQAP leaders Saleh Al-Awlaki and Saeed Baqadir, also named by one source as Saeed Mahdi Al-Hass. However other sources indicated that the men were killed in another overnight strike in Marib governorate. Mandab Press for example claimed that four unnamed AQAP members died in Shabwa’s Mayfa’a district; while al Awlaki and al Hass separately died in Marib governorate.

On April 24th 2017, the Pentagon announced that the US had carried out over eighty strikes in Yemen since February 28th 2017.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    2–5

Sources (42) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck on the road connecting the towns of Al Hawtah (الحوطة) to Azzan (عزان). Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for the road are: 14.351569, 47.418525.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck on the road connecting the towns of Al Hawtah (الحوطة) to Azzan (عزان).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

US Forces

WASHINGTON, April 24, 2017 — Coalition and U.S. strikes continue to aid progress against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq and Syria, and against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said here today.
Today is day 65 of the operation to liberate western Mosul in Iraq, he said, and yesterday Iraqi forces gained another 6 square kilometers along the forward line of troops on the axis of attack moving from the south toward Mosul’s old city.
Members of the Iraqi Emergency Response Division and the Federal Police maintained defensive positions along their eastern boundary and the Tigress River. The Counterterrorism Service also gained new ground and the Iraqi army’s 9th Division continued to defend positions west of Mosul. Clearing operations continue in eastern Mosul, Davis reported.
Supporting Iraq Operations
“The total number of munitions delivered since Oct. 17 in support of operations to liberate Mosul is 22,107,” he added.
The munitions destroyed total 259 vehicle-borne bombs, 638 buildings and facilities, 209 tunnels, 684 vehicles, 914 bunkers, 38 anti-aircraft artillery systems, 542 artillery and mortar systems, and 279 boats and barges, Davis said.
On April 23, coalition military forces conducted seven strikes consisting of 49 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS staging area, according to a statement by Operation Inherent Resolve officials.
Near Mosul, the officials said, six strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; destroyed 11 fighting positions, eight heavy machine guns, four rocket-propelled grenade systems, two ISIS-held buildings, an ISIS-held bridge and a vehicle-borne bomb; damaged 14 ISIS supply routes and a fighting position; and suppressed four rocket teams, three mortar teams and an ISIS tactical unit.
Operations in Syria
In the fight for Raqqa in Syria, the Pentagon spokesman said, Syrian Democratic Forces have liberated another 2 square kilometers in the Raqqa valley north and Tabqah areas, and in the Raqqa valley north on the western axis.
“The SDF is reporting large numbers of internally displaced persons fleeing ISIS-held areas around there,” Davis added, noting that ISIS does not control the Tabqah dam or the city but the city is almost entirely surrounded.
In Syria yesterday, according to an OIR statement, coalition military forces conducted 24 strikes consisting of 48 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes destroyed three ISIS wellheads. Near Palmyra, two strikes destroyed four fighting positions and two ISIS shipping containers.
Near Raqqa, seven strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions, a heavy machine gun, a tactical vehicle and an ISIS wellhead. And near Tabqah, 12 strikes engaged 10 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 12 fighting positions, a tactical vehicle, an ISIS vehicle, a heavy machine gun and a command-and-control node.
Yemen Operations
U.S. forces conducted a strike April 18 in the Ma’rib governorate against three al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, and another strike yesterday in the Shabwa governorate against eight al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, Davis said.
“Since February 28, we've conducted more than 80 precision strikes against AQAP militants, infrastructure, fighting positions and equipment, and we'll continue to conduct operations including strikes against known terrorists,” he added.
Davis said U.S. forces are conducting a series of sustained operations in Yemen against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to degrade the group's ability to coordinate external terror attack operations and limit their ability to hold territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen and use it as a safe haven for terror plotting.
Centcom is still assessing the results of the most recent strikes, he said.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    2–5

Sources (42) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr077

Incident date

April 18–19, 2017

Location

عطران, Atran, Ma'rib, Yemen

Geolocation

15.579719, 45.293884 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

Some reports suggested that a US drone strike killed four alleged AQAP militants in Atran area, Marib governorate, overnight from April 18th to April 19th 2017.  There were no known reports of civilian harm.

On April 24th 2017, Pentagon spokesperson Captain Jeff Davis stated that an April 18th strike had killed three al-Qaida militants in Marib governorate (USYEMTr076).  This entry has been created to reflect reports that a second unacknowledged strike took place in the same area overnight, though all of the sources could feasibly refer to either of the two potential strikes.

Though the US and some media sources reported that a single strike had taken place in Marib at that time, several sources reported two distinct strikes against alleged AQAP militants in Marib, killing seven militants in total.

According to one Twitter source, a drone strike killed three AQAP militants in a vehicle “between Al-Shabwan and Husn Al-Jalal”, while another killed four in “Atran area”.  Xinhua reported that a security official had detailed two distinct strikes, one against a car in Atran area, and another on a car “at a junction linking the areas of Al-Shabwan and Hoson Al-Jalal”.

Most sources mentioned a single US air strike, variously indicating that three or four AQAP militants had been killed, all in eastern Marib governorate.  According to AFP, local authorities were unable to identify those killed, in a strike that reportedly killed four, due to extensive burns to their bodies.  Sources also mentioned that one strike was located in Wadi Ubaidah, Atran area, between al-Hadshah farm and Jo Al-Naseem.

Given the proximity of the two alleged strikes, it is possible that reports refer to the same single event.  This entry has been created to accommodate the possibility of a second strike.  As such, Airwars has assessed the minimum killed in this strike as four, to reflect reports that four AQAP militants were killed in one strike, while the Pentagon only mentioned a strike which killed three.

Some sources named two of the dead as Salih al-Awlaki and Sa’id Baqadir; according to Alkhaleej Online, both were killed in a strike which killed four AQAP militants on the al-Hadshah farm, in Al-Hami town, Atran area.  However, other sources reported that al-Awlaki and Baqadir were, instead, killed in another overnight strike in Shabwa governorate (USYEMTr078).

Some sources claimed that the strike, or one of the two strikes, in al-Shabwan killed “four officers from the so-called National Army associated with Hadi”.

On April 24th 2017, the Pentagon announced that the US had carried out over eighty strikes in Yemen since February 28th 2017.

The incident occured during the night.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    4

Sources (57) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck within the vicinity of Atran (عطران), allegedly while on the way to Al Tadawin (التداوين). Research shows a Tadawin Military Camp in the vicinity, but sources do not specify which Tadawin is being referred to, the coordinates for this camp are: 15.536391, 45.346413. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Atran are: 15.579719, 45.293884.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck within the vicinity of Atran (عطران), allegedly while on the way to Al Tadawin (التداوين). Research shows a Tadawin Military Camp in the vicinity, but sources do not specify which Tadawin is being referred to.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

US Forces

Coalition and U.S. strikes continue to aid progress against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq and Syria, and against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said here today.
Today is day 65 of the operation to liberate western Mosul in Iraq, he said, and yesterday Iraqi forces gained another 6 square kilometers along the forward line of troops on the axis of attack moving from the south toward Mosul’s old city.
Members of the Iraqi Emergency Response Division and the Federal Police maintained defensive positions along their eastern boundary and the Tigress River. The Counterterrorism Service also gained new ground and the Iraqi army’s 9th Division continued to defend positions west of Mosul. Clearing operations continue in eastern Mosul, Davis reported.
Supporting Iraq Operations
“The total number of munitions delivered since Oct. 17 in support of operations to liberate Mosul is 22,107,” he added.
The munitions destroyed total 259 vehicle-borne bombs, 638 buildings and facilities, 209 tunnels, 684 vehicles, 914 bunkers, 38 anti-aircraft artillery systems, 542 artillery and mortar systems, and 279 boats and barges, Davis said.
On April 23, coalition military forces conducted seven strikes consisting of 49 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS staging area, according to a statement by Operation Inherent Resolve officials.
Near Mosul, the officials said, six strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; destroyed 11 fighting positions, eight heavy machine guns, four rocket-propelled grenade systems, two ISIS-held buildings, an ISIS-held bridge and a vehicle-borne bomb; damaged 14 ISIS supply routes and a fighting position; and suppressed four rocket teams, three mortar teams and an ISIS tactical unit.
Operations in Syria
In the fight for Raqqa in Syria, the Pentagon spokesman said, Syrian Democratic Forces have liberated another 2 square kilometers in the Raqqa valley north and Tabqah areas, and in the Raqqa valley north on the western axis.
“The SDF is reporting large numbers of internally displaced persons fleeing ISIS-held areas around there,” Davis added, noting that ISIS does not control the Tabqah dam or the city but the city is almost entirely surrounded.
In Syria yesterday, according to an OIR statement, coalition military forces conducted 24 strikes consisting of 48 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes destroyed three ISIS wellheads. Near Palmyra, two strikes destroyed four fighting positions and two ISIS shipping containers.
Near Raqqa, seven strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions, a heavy machine gun, a tactical vehicle and an ISIS wellhead. And near Tabqah, 12 strikes engaged 10 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 12 fighting positions, a tactical vehicle, an ISIS vehicle, a heavy machine gun and a command-and-control node.
Yemen Operations
U.S. forces conducted a strike April 18 in the Ma’rib governorate against three al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, and another strike yesterday in the Shabwa governorate against eight al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, Davis said.
“Since February 28, we've conducted more than 80 precision strikes against AQAP militants, infrastructure, fighting positions and equipment, and we'll continue to conduct operations including strikes against known terrorists,” he added.
Davis said U.S. forces are conducting a series of sustained operations in Yemen against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to degrade the group's ability to coordinate external terror attack operations and limit their ability to hold territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen and use it as a safe haven for terror plotting.
Centcom is still assessing the results of the most recent strikes, he said.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    4

Sources (57) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr076

Incident date

April 18–19, 2017

Location

بين حصن الجلال والشبوان, Between Husun Al Jalal and Al Shabwan, Ma'rib, Yemen

Airwars assessment

On April 24th 2017, Pentagon spokesperson Captain Jeff Davis stated that a US strike six days earlier had killed three al-Qaida militants in Marib governorate.  This confirmed earlier reports that a US drone strike had killed at least three alleged AQAP militants in Marib governorate, likely travelling on the road between Al-Shabwan and Husn Al-Jalal, overnight from April 18th to April 19th 2017. There were no known associated reports of civilian harm.

Though the US and some media reported that a single strike had taken place in Marib at that time, several sources reported two distinct strikes against alleged AQAP militants in Marib, killing seven militants in total. A third US strike also reportedly took place in Shabwa province around this time.

According to one Twitter source, @Demolinari, a drone strike killed three AQAP militants in a vehicle “between Al-Shabwan and Husn Al-Jalal”, while Najran Today noted that a strike had killed four in the Atran area.

Xinhua reported that a security official had detailed two distinct strikes, one against a car in Atran area, and another on a car “at a junction linking the areas of Al-Shabwan and Hoson Al-Jalal”.

Most sources mentioned a single US air strike, variously indicating that three or four AQAP militants had been killed, all in eastern Marib governorate.  According to AFP, local authorities were unable to identify those killed, in a strike that reportedly killed four, due to extensive burns to their bodies.  Sources also mentioned that one strike was located in Wadi Ubaidah, Atran area, between al-Hadshah farm and Jo Al-Naseem.

Given the proximity of the two alleged strikes, it is possible that reports refer to the same single event.  As such, Airwars has assessed the minimum killed in this strike as three, with a maximum of four, to reflect the possibility that different death toll reports reflect estimates of the same strike fatalities.  However, two event entries have been created, to reflect reports of distinct strikes.

Several sources named two of the dead as Salih al-Awlaki and Sa’id Baqadir. According to Alkhaleej Online, both were among four AQAP militants killed on the al-Hadshah farm, in Al-Hami town, Atran area.  However, other sources reported that al-Awlaki and Baqadir were, instead, killed in another overnight strike in Shabwa governorate (USYEMTr078).

Some sources claimed that the strike, or one of the two strikes, in al-Shabwan instead killed “four officers from the so-called National Army associated with Hadi”.

On April 24th 2017, the Pentagon announced that the US had carried out over eighty strikes in Yemen since February 28th 2017.

The incident occured during the night.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3–4

Sources (57) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck at the junction between Husun Al Jalal (حصون آل جلال) and Al Shabwan (ال شبوان), within the Wadi Obeida (وادي عبيدة) area, east of Ma’rib (مريب) city. Research in the area shows three distinct locations, Husun Al Jalal at: 15.533332945, 45.299999935; Husun Al Jalal Al Jadidah (حصون الجلال الجديدة) at: 15.47834, 45.3635; Husun Al Jalal Al Qadimah (حصون آل جلال القديمة) at: 15.47163, 45.37. In addition, we have identified an Al Shabwan village at: 15.545353936, 45.400366939; and the Al Shabwan district for which the generic coordinates are: 15.634177, 45.343297. Without specific information as to which of these locations the reports are referring to, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for these locations are: 15.546247, 45.350407.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck at the junction between Husun Al Jalal (حصون آل جلال) and Al Shabwan (ال شبوان), within the Wadi Obeida (وادي عبيدة) area, east of Ma’rib (مريب) city. Research in the area shows three distinct locations, Husun Al Jalal, Husun Al Jalal Al Jadidah, and Husun Al Jalal Al Qadimah. In addition, we have identified an Al Shabwan village and the Al Shabwan district. Without specific information as to which of these locations the reports are referring to, we were unable to verify the location further.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

US Forces

Coalition and U.S. strikes continue to aid progress against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq and Syria, and against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said here today.
Today is day 65 of the operation to liberate western Mosul in Iraq, he said, and yesterday Iraqi forces gained another 6 square kilometers along the forward line of troops on the axis of attack moving from the south toward Mosul’s old city.
Members of the Iraqi Emergency Response Division and the Federal Police maintained defensive positions along their eastern boundary and the Tigress River. The Counterterrorism Service also gained new ground and the Iraqi army’s 9th Division continued to defend positions west of Mosul. Clearing operations continue in eastern Mosul, Davis reported.
Supporting Iraq Operations
“The total number of munitions delivered since Oct. 17 in support of operations to liberate Mosul is 22,107,” he added.
The munitions destroyed total 259 vehicle-borne bombs, 638 buildings and facilities, 209 tunnels, 684 vehicles, 914 bunkers, 38 anti-aircraft artillery systems, 542 artillery and mortar systems, and 279 boats and barges, Davis said.
On April 23, coalition military forces conducted seven strikes consisting of 49 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS staging area, according to a statement by Operation Inherent Resolve officials.
Near Mosul, the officials said, six strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; destroyed 11 fighting positions, eight heavy machine guns, four rocket-propelled grenade systems, two ISIS-held buildings, an ISIS-held bridge and a vehicle-borne bomb; damaged 14 ISIS supply routes and a fighting position; and suppressed four rocket teams, three mortar teams and an ISIS tactical unit.
Operations in Syria
In the fight for Raqqa in Syria, the Pentagon spokesman said, Syrian Democratic Forces have liberated another 2 square kilometers in the Raqqa valley north and Tabqah areas, and in the Raqqa valley north on the western axis.
“The SDF is reporting large numbers of internally displaced persons fleeing ISIS-held areas around there,” Davis added, noting that ISIS does not control the Tabqah dam or the city but the city is almost entirely surrounded.
In Syria yesterday, according to an OIR statement, coalition military forces conducted 24 strikes consisting of 48 engagements against ISIS targets.
Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes destroyed three ISIS wellheads. Near Palmyra, two strikes destroyed four fighting positions and two ISIS shipping containers.
Near Raqqa, seven strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units and destroyed three fighting positions, a heavy machine gun, a tactical vehicle and an ISIS wellhead. And near Tabqah, 12 strikes engaged 10 ISIS tactical units and destroyed 12 fighting positions, a tactical vehicle, an ISIS vehicle, a heavy machine gun and a command-and-control node.
Yemen Operations
U.S. forces conducted a strike April 18 in the Ma’rib governorate against three al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, and another strike yesterday in the Shabwa governorate against eight al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula terrorists, Davis said.
“Since February 28, we've conducted more than 80 precision strikes against AQAP militants, infrastructure, fighting positions and equipment, and we'll continue to conduct operations including strikes against known terrorists,” he added.
Davis said U.S. forces are conducting a series of sustained operations in Yemen against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to degrade the group's ability to coordinate external terror attack operations and limit their ability to hold territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen and use it as a safe haven for terror plotting.
Centcom is still assessing the results of the most recent strikes, he said.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Known attacker
    US Forces
  • Known target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3–4

Sources (57) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr075

Incident date

April 16, 2017

Location

مديرية مودية, Mudiyah District, Abyan, Yemen

Geolocation

13.904075, 46.233215 Note: The accuracy of this location is to District level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

District

Airwars assessment

A US drone strike reportedly targeted alleged AQAP militants in Qarn Amarim village, Mudiyah district of Abyan governorate, on the evening of April 16th 2017. There were no known associated reports of civilian harm.

Some social media sources reported (for example @Demolinari) that a strike had taken place against militants travelling in a car in Mudiyah, though one instead suggested that the strike targeted a gathering of AQAP members. Abyan Now tweeted an image of a destroyed vehicle.

According to Erem News, “anti-terrorist forces” associated with the Yemeni government said that AQAP leaders were killed in the US strike against their car. As such, Airwars has assessed the minimum alleged number of dead belligerents as two.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    2

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • A US drone strike reportedly targeted alleged AQAP militants, possibly leaders, travelling in a car in Mudiyah on April 16th 2017 (@AbyanNewsNow, April 16th 2017)

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the vicinity of Qarn Amarim (قرن أمارم) village, east of Mudiyah (مودية) town. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Mudiyah district (مديرية مودية) are: 13.904075, 46.233215.

  • Reports of the incident mention a vehicle being struck in the vicinity of Qarn Amarim (قرن أمارم) village, east of Mudiyah (مودية) town.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

US Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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
    2

Sources (12) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr074

Incident date

April 16, 2017

Location

مودية, Northern outskirts of Mudiyah, Abyan, Yemen

Geolocation

13.929915, 46.079702 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A US naval strike reportedly targeted an alleged AQAP site on the northern outskirts of Mudiyah town, Abyan governorate, on the evening of April 16th 2017. There were no reported associated civilian or militant casualties.

According to Aden al-Ghad, a missile exploded in Al Qassarat area, according to locals, but left no casualties. This was reportedly one of two US naval strikes in Mudiyah on the evening of April 16th, the other striking to the west of the town.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention two strikes on the outskirts of Mudiyah (مودية) town. One struck the Al Qassarat (الكسارات) area in the north, while another struck in the west, allegedly in the vicinity of a medical clinic. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Mudiyah town are: 13.929915, 46.079702

US Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USYEMTr073

Incident date

April 16, 2017

Location

مودية, Western outskirts of Mudiyah, Abyan, Yemen

Geolocation

13.929915, 46.079702 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

A US naval strike reportedly targeted an alleged AQAP site on the western outskirts of Mudiyah town, in Abyan governorate, on the evening of April 16th 2017. There were no known reported civilian or militant casualties.

According to Aden al-Ghad, a missile exploded near a medical clinic to the west of the town, according to locals, but left no casualties. This was reportedly one of two US naval strikes in Mudiyah on the evening of April 16th, with a second missile reportedly landing in the north of the town according to Yafa News.

The incident occured in the evening.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention two strikes on the outskirts of Mudiyah (مودية) town. One struck the Al Qassarat (الكسارات) area in the north, while another struck in the west, allegedly in the vicinity of a medical clinic. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Mudiyah town are: 13.929915, 46.079702.

US Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike, Naval bombardment
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Suspected attacker
    US Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)

Sources (18) [ collapse]