On 25 September 2011 at about 4 am, NATO struck a residential building in Sirte that ended up in killing a family that consists of four children and three women.
Amnesty International said: “It is not clear whether another relative, Mosbah Ahmed Diyab, a Brigadier-General in al-Gaddafi’s forces who lived in another area of the city, was in the house at the time of the attack. According to surviving relatives he had visited earlier that evening and may or may not have been in the house at the time of the NATO attack.”
A Human Rights Watch field investigation found: “On September 25, around 4:30 a.m., during heavy fighting in the town of Sirte, 450 kilometers east of Tripoli, NATO aircraft twice struck the home of Salem Dyab in District 3. A possible target was the owner’s brother, Brig. Gen. Musbah Ahmed Dyab, who may have been there at the time. Some family members told Human Rights Watch that the strike killed General Dyab, 53. That remains unconfirmed, but seven civilian members of the family did apparently die in the strike. Human Rights Watch obtained copies of death certificates for three women and four children, the youngest of whom was 15 months old. Four civilian family members were wounded, the family said.”
It added: “Three-quarters of the house was flattened, and the rest was heavily damaged. The basement was still intact. A few remnants of NATO munitions were found in the rubble, but the type of weapon could not be determined. On the premises, Human Rights Watch also found several empty ammunition boxes for small arms. Family members said the house had not been used for any military purpose and no weapons or other military equipment were there prior to the attack. The ammunition boxes were placed there after the family left, they said.
According to family members, at least 13 members of the extended family were staying at the home on the day of the attack, after another home belonging to the family in western Sirte was damaged in fighting. The family was also hosting guests in the basement to receive condolences after the September 12 death of a relative, Muhammad Khalifullah Zaroug, 24, who was allegedly killed in a NATO air strike on a checkpoint 50 kilometers west of Sirte. All of the family members and neighbors said there was heavy fighting between Gaddafi and opposition forces in Sirte on the day of the attack.”
Several condolence pages commemorated the victims over the the following years on Facebook.
NATO on that day reported hitting: “1 command and control node, 2 ammunition/vehicle storage facility, 1 radar facility, 1 multiple rocket launcher, 1 military support vehicle, 1 artillery piece, 1 ammunition storage facility.” in the vicinity of Sirte.
The incident occured between 4:00 am and 4:30 am local time.