Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

CI070

Incident date

June 3, 2015

Location

الحويجة, Hawijah, industrial district, Kirkuk, Iraq

Geolocation

35.3208131, 43.7832295 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A Coalition airstrike on an Islamic State depot levelled a significant number of buildings, and at least 70 civilians and a large number of militants were reportedly killed. A large supply of TNT explosive detonated after the IED-making facility was struck. Bas News described the attack as one of the worst mass casualty incidents in Iraq since the 2003 invasion.

Following the publication of a major investigation by Dutch media NOS and NRC in October 2019, which claimed that the Netherlands had been responsible for the incident, the Dutch Ministry of Defence finally took public responsibility for the airstrike on November 4th, 2019.

The head of Kirkuk’s Arab Council, Mohammed Khalil al-Jubouri, at the time placed the number of dead and injured civilians at 150. The Iraqi Revolution site claimed that 70 civilians had died, with more than 100 injured. Rudaw also reported 70 killed, describing 26 children and 22 women among the dead.

Local sheikh Abdallah al-Jubouri told Al-Araby news agency at the time that “several international coalition airstrikes hit the district. The losses were made worse by there being no ambulances or other means to rescue victims.” He added that “This is the single worse airstrike that has targeted civilians in al-Hawija; eight months ago we were getting hit by Iraqi army warplanes but that has stopped. The international coalition has committed a civilian massacre today and Islamic State and its weapons are the reason.“

Eyewitness Hassan Mahmoud al-Jubbouri told Reuters that the area looked as if it had been hit by a nuclear bomb, and described pulling the bodies of a family of six from the rubble. Only one victim has so far been named – Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi – described as the owner of a car maintenance shop in the district.

Bizarrely, in the immediate wake of the strike, a Coalition official told Reuters: “Since we started airstrikes in August last year in Iraq, I have difficulty thinking of any civilian casualties in Iraq, and for thousands of sorties that is good. One is clearly too many.“

Among as many as 100 militants also reported killed was Islamic State’s local police chief, named as Jassim Shukur. “The [Coalition] warplanes also bombarded two other sub-districts around Hawija and many other ISIS militants who were with the police chief were killed by the bombardment,” Iraqi official Sarhad Qadir told Rudaw.

In a later January 2016 report, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) noted that US officials had confirmed carrying out the Hawijah attack though went on to state: “Pictures and videos have emerged in media and online showing an area purporting to be the blast site that has been almost completely flattened. UNAMI/OHCHR was not able to verify the authenticity of the photos or the videos, nor the number of civilian casualties.”

In October 2019, Dutch media NOS and NRC published a major investigation in which they alleged that Dutch F-16s had carried out the attack. This also revealed that chief Coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan had confirmed to reporters in December 2018 that at least 70 civilians had in fact died – though this had not been officially reported out by the CJTF civilian casualty cell. This statement was later withdrawn by the Coalition on December 5th 2019, asserting that they were no longer able to determine the exact amount of civilian casualties in the incident.

However, past and present officials did confirm to NRC that 70 civilian deaths had been privately counted for Hawijah by the Coalition for at least 18 months – suggesting that the Dutch government may have pressured the Coalition to withdraw its initial estimate.

On November 4th 2019, the Dutch Ministry of Defence took public responsibility for the airstrike. This stirred a public and parliamentary debate in the Netherlands on transparency and accountability regarding civilian casualties as a result of Dutch airstrikes. As a result, Dutch Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld promised significant transparency improvements and said she was looking into possibilities for voluntary compensation for victims.

On November 28th 2019, Dutch newspaper NRC wrote that according to locals, the estimate of 70 civilian deaths was an absolute minimum number. Civilians stated that “almost everyone in Hawijah lost neighbours or family members [in the incident]”.

NRC stated that the Dutch Socialist Party, after seeking contact with the Iraqi Communist Party (ICP), had local Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud collect the names of victims. With volunteers, Abu Louis went from house to house in the affected areas to find eyewitnesses of the event in 2015. According to Abu Louis, there were “62 people killed, including 36 children and 13 women, 822 wounded, 70 destroyed houses, 375 cars total loss”. 405 of the injured were registered in the hospital. The other 417 did not have any permanent injuries.

Abu Louis’ own nephew Homan (15 years old) was killed after debris hit him in the stomach.

On December 3rd, 2019, the Dutch parliament passed a motion which called on the government “to make every effort, where possible in cooperation with NGOs, UN and local authorities, to conduct further investigations on civilian victims as a result of Dutch actions in Hawija”.

In February 2020, the Dutch Ministry of Defence released previously classified documents about the airstrike, including Defensie’s own investigation after several FOIA requests by both Airwars and Dutch media. The documents revealed that the Dutch red cardholder, the military official with a potential veto over airstrikes, was aware before the strike that the risk to civilians could be created than that the Collateral Damage Estimate (CDE) indicated.

Related documents to the case by the Public’s Prosecutors office (OM) were also released, revealing that the OM’s investigation into Hawijah only started nine months after the event and that it was not until 15 months later that the pilots were heard for the first time.

In March 2020, Airwars reported, based on information provided by a senior (non-Dutch) military official, that at least one other Coalition country had refused to conduct the Hawijah strike, implying that the potential risk to civilians was expected to be too high.

A month later, the US government released its investigation into the airstrike after a judicial procedure following an unanswered FOIA request by NRC and NOS. The documents revealed that US officials were aware that the 2015 Dutch airstrike on Hawijah posed a threat to civilians. Four CIA informants had warned the Coalition about civilians living near the ISIS IED factory, as reported by NOS. Furthermore, the Coalition amended its targeting development process. In the future, the Coalition would have to do further in-depth investigation into possible secondary explosions in densely populated areas.

On April 29th, 2020, human rights lawyer Liesbeth Zegveld filed a claim in name of 47 Iraqi’s with the Dutch Ministry of Defence. Some of her clients were severely injured in the airstrike and/or suffered material losses, others lost their relatives. Among her clients are the relatives of Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin, who was working as a security guard in a car showroom on an industrial estate, a 100 metres from the ISIS IED factory, during the night of June 2nd to June 3rd. A few days after the airstrike, Moeshin died of his injuries.

On May 14th, 2020, a fourth Dutch parliamentary debate on the case took place. The Dutch Red Card Holder had not received information about the CIA warnings and the American doubts on the risks for civilians before giving a green light to the airstrike. During the debate, Minister of Defence Ank Bijleveld stated that there should be better arrangements on information sharing between the Coalition and the Netherlands.

The incident occured after midnight.

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi Adult male Owner of the car maintenance shop in the area killed
  • Sa’diya Ramadan Jadou 19 years old female wife of Ali Assem Ahmad, died after being hit in the neck by glass of a window that exploded in the incident killed
  • Abdulmalek Qader 5 years old male son of Alaa Qader, blinded by one eye injured
  • Wife of Alaa Qader Adult female first name unknown, injury in back injured
  • Homan 15 years old male nephew of Mohammad ‘Abu Louis’ Shadid Hamad Dawoud, hit in the stomach by debris killed
  • Ahmad Shujaá Moeshin 24 years old male worked as a night security guard killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • 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
  • Known target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (13) [ collapse]

  • Kherallah Ahmed Al Saleh Al Thawabi (via deleted Facebook page)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An infant allegedly killed in the attack (via Rudaw)
  • The aftermath of the Dutch strike on Hawijah in 2015 which killed an estimated 70 civilians (via Iraqi Revolution).
  • Industrial area of Hawijah, before (above) and after (below) the attack (via NOS).
  • Photo of destruction of Hawijah's industrial area. It is unclear when this photo was taken (via NOS).
  • Footage of Hawijah after the airstrike on June 3th, 2015, published as propaganda by the Islamic State shortly after the incident (via VRT).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • A photo that Alaa Qader took of his house, 1 to 1,5 kilometers away from the site of the incident, after a Dutch airstrike on an ISIS weapon facility in Hawijah, Kirkuk, on June 2nd-3rd 2015 (via NOS).
  • France24 report on the airstrike of May 11th, 2020 (via France24).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Excerpt of the US investigation into Hawijah, released in April 2020 (via NOS).
  • Recommendation to update the target development process in a US document released in April 2020 (via NOS).

Geolocation notes (6) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة), Kirkuk province, specifically the “city centre” area and the “industrial district area Bahoijh” (الحي الصناعي بالحويجة). The majority of reports monitored by Airwars state that the incident occurred at night, most likely closely after midnight on Wednesday, June 3rd. There were conflicting reports – on Thursday, June 4th 2015, bas news stated that the incident occurred on “Wednesday evening” (June 3rd, 2015). On June 5th, 2015, alquds quoted a member of the Security Committee in the Kirkuk provincial council, Mohammed Jubouri, as saying a ”French aircraft bombed late on Thursday, a bomb manufacturing plant belonging to the ‘State’ in the district of Hawija.” Reuters reported “in a statement on Wednesday, the Coalition said an airstrike targeted a ‘vehicle-borne improvised explosive device facility’ in Hawija between 8 am on June 2 and 8 am the following day” Prior to the Coalition releasing the MGRS for this incident, Airwars had geolocated it to the nearest neighbourhood/area at 35.323474, 43.78453.

  • Industrial district in the city of Al Hawija (الحويجة)

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

  • Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction Landsat 8 image of Hawija showing blast area and large-scale destruction

    Date taken:
    June 5, 2015

    Resolution:
    30 m

    Imagery:
    © 2018 USGS

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    June 11, 2018

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

  • Stills from an Al Jazeera report (Daesh video). Published on Jun. 11th, 2015 (one week after the incident).

    Date taken:
    November 6, 2015

    Imagery:
    © 2018 Al Jazeera

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 secondary explosion(s)
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    70
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    Hawijah, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLE894093
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    70
  • (26 children22 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    80–100
  • 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
  • Known target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    80–100

Sources (64) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI060

Incident date

April 20, 2015

Location

الموصل‎, Mosul, Aden, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.35132, 43.21243 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Within 100m (via Coalition) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A reported Coalition airstrike on an electricity generating facility reportedly killed up tp 35 civilians and injured 22 more when nearby apartments were caught in the blast, according to reports.

The US led Coalition later conceded 18 deaths in this event.

At the time of the incident, NINA cited a medical source at the hospital as saying: “The incident resulted in the death of 35 civilians, including 11 women, and wounding 22 others, including five women.”

Local resident Mohanad Musli described “tens of flattened bodies with families still under the rubble”. Another eyewitness, Bassam al Khaldi, said that multiple strikes had also targeted rescuers: “I’m from this area and when people gathered to rescue the wounded there was shelling for a second time on people, and this caused big losses. And after quarter of an hour they struck a third time, but by the mercy of God this time the missile did not explode.”

A Mosul-based eyewitness to the event later provided graphic images of civilian casualties to Airwars, including a picture of four dead children.

Between April 2016 and June 2017, New York Times reporters Azmat Khan and Anand Gopal visited the sites of nearly 150 airstrikes across northern Iraq. Regarding this specific incident, they note that, “On the evening of April 20, 2015, aircraft bombed an electricity substation in the Aden district of East Mosul, causing a tremendous explosion that engulfed the street. Dozens of residents had come to the site of the airstrike to rescue civilians, which resulted in the deaths of at least 18 civilians, and injuries to at least a dozen civilians, many who lived down the street. Muthana Ahmed Tuaama, a university student, told us his brother rushed into the blaze to rescue the wounded, when a second blast shook the facility. “I found my brother at the end of the street,” he said. “I carried him.” Body parts littered the alleyway. “You see those puddles of water,” he said. “It was just like that, but full of blood.”

In July 2017 the Coalition initially denied responsibility on grounds of available evidence of civilian harm: “April 20, 2015, near Adan, Iraq, via Airwars report: After a review of available information and strike video it was assessed that there is insufficient evidence to find that civilians were harmed in this strike.”

Later, on June 28th 2018, the Coalition changed its position and admitted it had unintentionally killed 18 civilians in the strike. The assessment stated: “During a strike on Daesh IED factory, 18 civilians were unintentionally killed.“

The Coalition later provided Airwars the location of the strike, accurate to within a 100 metre box, placing it in the industrial area of Adan neighbourhood in east Mosul.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Brother of Muthana Ahmed Tuaama Adult male killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    18 – 35
  • (4 children11 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    22–50
  • 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
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (10) [ collapse]

  • Aftermath of the alleged strike
  • Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of the alleged incident provided by an eyewitness, resident in Mosul that Airwars made contact with by phone on 20/04/2015. They were taken by his brother who lives in the neighbourhood that was bombed

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

  • Imagery:
    © 2018 Google

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
    No reason given
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    18
  • Stated location
    near Aden neighborhood, Mosul, Iraq
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    38SLF396244
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Jun 28, 2018
  • April 20, 2015, near Aden neighborhood, Mosul, Iraq, via media report. During a strike on Daesh IED factory, 18 civilians were unintentionally killed.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

On April 19th-20th the coalition reported four strikes in the vicinity: “Near Mosul, four airstrikes struck an ISIL staging area, destroying four ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL armored vehicle and an ISIL excavator.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    18 – 35
  • (4 children11 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    22–50
  • 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
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CI056

Incident date

April 4, 2015

Location

فايده, Fadhiliya, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.5125336, 43.2689667 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Five Kurdish non-combatants, all from the same family, died in a reported Coalition strike on the village of Fadhiliyah, near Mosul. A major field investigation by the Guardian later identified the dead.

Three family members survived the attack though were injured. Rahim, an eyewitness and relative, told the Guardian: “We wrapped the dead in blankets and buried them the same day.”

CENTCOM later confirmed that the coalition had struck targets at Fadhiliya on April 4, with a spokesman adding that it was “looking into this further”. Local MP Mala Salim Juma Mohammad said he had been able to confirm that the family had no connection to militants, adding of the strike that “It was a mistake. The coalition needs to compensate the family adequately.”

A declassified CENTCOM report published by Airwars in August 2015 revealed that a US A-10 Warthog had struck the village, in response to a ‘troops in contact’ request by a unit labelled the Irbil Strike Cell. As the report notes, “Strike imagery shows a structure in the strike radius” and a formal investigation was launched into the attack. The results are not presently known.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (5)

  • Hazem Abdulla Shahin 69 years old male Named by The Guardian, father killed
  • Nadya Nouri Dawoud 60 years old female Named by The Guardian, mother killed
  • Laith Hazem Abdulla 43 years old male Named by The Guardian, son killed
  • Hana Ali Abdulla 43 years old female pregnant Named by The Guardian, bride of Laith Hazem Abdulla killed
  • Danya Laith Hazem 8 years old male Named by The Guardian, daughter of Laith Hazem Abdulla and Hana Ali Abdulla killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    5
  • (1 child2 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (8) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • April 4th Danya Laith Hazem (Guardian)
  • Extract from declassified CENTCOM document detailing the Fadhiliya case

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Open incident
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    Al Fadiliya, Iraq
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • May 1, 2015
  • 5 KIA, 1 WIA At 2225Z [zulu = local time] the Irbil Strike Cell received a report of Troops in Contact IVO Mosul, IRQ. KRSC reported DShsK contact from al-Fadhiliya village [ ] A-10 US engaged with GBU-38s utilizing ROE 008. Initial BDA was assessed as 2x DShsK fighting positions destroyed. Strike imagery shows a structure in the strike radius. USEMB later received CIVCAS allegation. 4/6/2015: CJFLCC-I is preparing the "first impressions report" to determine a credibility assessment IAW CENTCOM. If the allegation is found to be credible, an AR-15 6 will be conducted and if the allegation is found to be not-credible it will be filed.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    5
  • (1 child2 women2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Known target
    ISIS

Sources (8) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS054

Incident date

February 11, 2015

Location

كبيبة, Kbeibah, Al-Hasakah, Syria

Geolocation

36.91498, 41.38123 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Two oil workers were killed and two others injured in a reported Coalition airstrike on a house used by workers at Kbeibah, according to a number of sources The two dead men were buried at Hadida Cemetery in Hassakah.

The Syrian Network for Human Rights published a detailed report on the event: “On Wednesday February 11, 2015 at almost 10:30pm, the international alliance aircraft raided Kbeibeh, southern Hasakah where a large number of oil wells were spread, and controlled by ISIS. The air force strike launched a missile over the mud-walled homes, consisting of two rooms, which were 500 meters, from the oil wells. These rooms were for the sleeping and resting of the staff who oversee the operations of the well. The shelling caused civilian deaths from the well personnel and wounded several others. It is said that ISIS oversees the management and investment of the well, however they are employing people from the surrounding areas to assist in the operation of the wells, which they fund.

The residents of that area told us that the victims were local staff who assist ISIS in the sale of oil and operations of the existing wells in Kbeibeh guard them at night, and help in organising the cars that come to buy oil from these existing wells. It should be noted that ISIS requires one to pledge their allegiance in order for them to give them jobs, however, this does not mean that everyone who swears allegiance to ISIS is obliged to ,take up arms and fight at their side. Many have swore allegiance to ISIS just to get a job.

“Rsoum Almraid, from Al Hadidiya, southern Hasakah countryside, Ziad Al_huskkawi”-chose not to reveal his real name- from Al Hadidiya” who is a relative of the victim Foad Athal and also a relative to another :wounded, from southern Hasakah told SNHR I visited my cousin “Rsoum Almraid” on Thursday morning at his” home a day after his injury, from the alliance bombing of the mud house near Kbeibeh wells, 500m from the nearest well, and he told ,me then about his injury, ‘We were four civilians working as employees for ISIS, we help in the sale of oil from existing wells in Kbeibeh as we work on the order of the role of the cars that come to buy ‘.crude oil We entered the house after prayer at about 9pm, and we decided to sleep and me and the other wounded friend went to sleep in’” “the mud house, we went to one room while “foad Athal Al-waka’a  and “Abu Ali al-Mashhadani,” entered the other room.

‘We used the house as a lounge because it was close to the well in which we work, and while we were asleep we were surprised when a missile hit the next room and destroyed it completely. The room that we were inside was partially destroyed. I was with my friend and we had superficial cuts and bruises on our bodies and faces because a wall beside us collapsed but we survived miraculously. After which we went quickly to the nearest house to request assistance in the search for “Fouad and Abu Ali” because their room was completely destroyed, the nearest house is approximately one kilometre from the mud house.

‘We told the owners that there were two young men under the rubble and we know nothing about them already and seven men went and recovered the bodies which were charred and mutilated almost completely, “Fuad and Abu Ali” died on impact. The people then transferred the bodies of the victims to the village of Al Hadidiya where they were buried, “Fuad” in Hadidiya Cemetery on Thursday morning in the presence of people of the village. Villagers searched for the family of “Abu Ali al-Mashhadani,” because  we do not know where he is from, and we do not know his full name because it was the first time that we had met him, but I was aware that he is a friend of “Fuad” and that he was an employee for ISIS at “‘.another well.

SNHR managed to communicate with Abu Mahmoud from Kbeibeh where he told us: ”I spent the evening in the house of my friend, and we were far from the place of the bombing, about seven kilometres. I heard a loud explosion between the hours of ten and eleven on Wednesday evening, it was an explosion, and only one, not sounding important .as we are used to the sound on daily basis The next day I heard that one of the tribe “Foad Athal” was found dead in a mud house by a missile strike, I didn’t know where the missile was from but everyone said it was an alliance aircraft and ,that it was flying in the area in on the day. I went to his funeral where he was buried in Al-Hadidiya cemetery, and I heard there was someone else dead but still unidentified. ISIS started depending on the locals to help in the selling the oil and guarding it at night. No one can come close to the wells without the permission of ISIS or its employees and that is because of the great fear of ISIS.”

“SNHR noticed strong emphasis by the alliance forces in recent months to target all oil facilities, especially in rural Deir Az-Zour and Al-Hasakah which are rich in oil fields, in order to dry up the main source for financing for ISIS, as it also provides fuel for military operations. The targeting of wells and refineries, which the people of those areas depend on as a source of livelihood head caused a severe economic crisis in that region as it caused a great shortage of fuel (diesel fuel, gasoline and gas). This led to the rise in prices unreasonably.

“Of the 103 civilian people who were killed by the international alliance, there are 29 people that were killed in seven incidents of bombing installations and oil mechanisms, which means approximately one-third of the total victims, they seem to prompt message to the people in that region aims to warn them of the risks of work and trade in the oil field, but in contrast, there is no choice for the people there to get the resource to live, and we are highly concerned continuing this policy will lead to more casualties if the Coalition forces continue to adopt that same policy.”

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year – the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “ February 11, 2015, in Kbeibah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2795/CS054 37SGA121881”.

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed.

The incident occured at 22:30:00 local time.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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 Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Kbeibah, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SGA121881
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • February 11, 2015, in Kbeibah, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties. 2795/CS054 37SGA121881

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The coalition has reported airstrikes in the vicinity for both February 10th-11th 2015 (“Near Al Hasakah, an airstrike struck multiple ISIL storage and staging facilities“) and for February 11th-12th 2015 (“Near Al Hasakah, an airstrike struck multiple ISIL oil pump jacks.“)

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Incident Code

CS048

Incident date

January 29, 2015

Location

الطيانة, Eastern Al Buwaida or Kobane, Homs or Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

34.993798, 40.548059 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A non-combatant civilian male, Abd Al Rahman Ahmad Bkar, from the town of Al Kussair near Homs was reported killed in an airstrike.

While Syrian Martyrs attributed the strike to the Coalition, VDC blamed the Assad regime. Other reports were unclear. The location of the man’s death was also confused, given variously as Kobane in Aleppo governorate, or eastern al Buwaida, near Homs.

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “January 29, 2015, in Tayyani, Syria, via Airwars report. The allegation provided insufficient detail to identify a specific date, time, or location to search for corroborating Coalition action. 2794/CS048 37SFU413734”

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Abd Al Rahman Ahmad Bkar. Adult male He is originally from al Buwaida al Sharqiya in Homs, reported killed in Kobani, Aleppo according to VDC in regime shelling killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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
    Insufficient information on the time and location
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Tayyani, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SFU413734
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • January 29, 2015, in Tayyani, Syria, via Airwars report. The allegation provided insufficient detail to identify a specific date, time, or location to search for corroborating Coalition action. 2794/CS048 37SFU413734

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

Five coalition airstrikes are confirmed for the vicinity of Kobane for January 28th-29th 2015: “Near Kobani, five airstrikes struck an ISIL fighting position, three ISIL tactical units, and a large ISIL unit.” An additional two strikes are confirmed for January 29th-30th: “Near Kobani, two airstrikes struck two ISIL staging positions and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions and one ISIL vehicle.”

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 man)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS

Incident Code

CS047

Incident date

January 25, 2015

Location

ﺣﻠﺐ, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.197971, 37.1656697 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

The Syrian Martyrs website identified a single non-combatant victim of a reported Coalition strike in Aleppo.  He was also named by the Damascus Centre for Human Rights Research which said he was originally from Idlib, though didn’t specify if he was a civilian or a militant.

However, all other sources described al Jolani as a combatant (sometimes known as ‘The Emir of Jabhat Al Nusra in Aleppo’), who fought with the Al Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front. He was described as having been killed in an assault by the Syrian Army on January 25th.

In a third version of events, the Siraj agency claimed Abu Khadija actually died on January 28th, succumbing to injuries received on January 19th in a Coalition airstrike on his vehicle. Another Nusra Front commander, Abu Omar al-Hamwi, reportedly died at the scene. How the militant commander was then able to tweet four days later is unclear.

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “January 25, 2015, in Aleppo, Syria, via Airwars report. The allegation provided insufficient detail to identify a specific date, time, or location to search for corroborating Coalition action.”

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1

Sources (8) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Al Jolani, 'the Emir of Aleppo', wrongly described in one report as a non-combatant [via: Orient News]

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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
    Insufficient information on the time and location
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Aleppo, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SCA351075
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • January 25, 2015, in Aleppo, Syria, via Airwars report. The allegation provided insufficient detail to identify a specific date, time, or location to search for corroborating Coalition action. 2793/CS047 37SCA351075

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

No coalition airstrikes were publicly reported for the vicinity of Aleppo on either January 24th-25th or January 25th-26th 2015.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1

Sources (8) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS031

Incident date

November 25, 2014

Location

بنش, Binnish, Idlib, Syria

Geolocation

35.958429, 36.711587 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

There were claims that a ‘civilian male’, named as Dergham Karah Ali, was killed in a Coalition airstrike on the village of Binnish in Idlib governorate.

However, two videos later emerged challenging Ali’s non-combatant status. One showed him singing a moderate resistance song.

The second video, posted by Islamic State, indicated that Ali had later become a fighter for ISIS, using the nom de guerre of Abu Hammam.

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “November 25, 2014, in Binnish, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties.”

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Dergham Karah Ali Adult male Probable combatant though named by some sources as a non combatant killed

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • Video showing Dergham Ali singing a resistance song.
  • Another video of Dergham Ali singing.

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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 Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    in Binnish, Syria
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SBV936818
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2019
  • November 25, 2014, in Binnish, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

No coalition airstrikes were officially reported as occurring in Idlib governorate between November 24th-26th 2014.

Summary

  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 men)
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Discounted
    Those killed were combatants, or other parties most likely responsible.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS008

Incident date

September 28, 2014

Location

جرابلس, Road between Manbij and Jarabulus (Road 216), Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.6268445, 37.9348657 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Subdistrict level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a coalition airstrike “on Islamic State buildings” killed “several” civilians who were being held captive, as well as five Islamic State militants.

The full translated quote from SOHR reads as follows: “Also at least five members of the Islamic State were killed and others wounded following a raid carried out by the International/Arab coalition aircraft on an IS building on the road between Manbij and Jarabulus. There were also reports of deaths and injury of several civilians who were detained by the organization in that building.”

In its monthly civilian casualty report for October 2019 – published on December 5th of that year, the Coalition assessed the event as ‘non credible’, noting that “September 28, 2014, on the road between Manbij and Jarabulus, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties.”

Coalition officials also provided Airwars with a geolocation to within 100 metres of the area reviewed.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention an “IS building” on the road between ( منبج ) Manbij and( جرابلس ) Jarablus. The road is number 216. There was no further information on the location on the building. The coordinates for the middle point of Road 216 between Mabij and Jarablus are: 36.6268445, 37.9348657 Location of ( منبج ) Manbij: 36.5269242, 37.9559288 Location of ( جرابلس ) Jarabulus: 36.818378, 38.010343

  • Road 216 Mabij-Jarablus

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:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition 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 Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    on the road between Manbij and Jarabulus
    Nearest population center
  • Location accuracy
    100 m
  • MGRS coordinate
    37SDA048539
    Military Grid Reference System

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 5, 2020
  • September 28, 2014, on the road between Manbij and Jarabulus, Syria, via Airwars report. After a review of all available records it was assessed that no Coalition actions were conducted in the geographical area that corresponds to the report of civilian casualties.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

The coalition has confirmed strikes in the vicinity, though has denied any civilian casualties. For September 28th-29th 2014 it reported: “U.S. and partner nations conducted two airstrikes on an ISIL compound and an ISIL-held airfield in northwest Syria near Aleppo.“

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    US-led Coalition
  • Suspected target
    ISIS
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5

Sources (4) [ collapse]