Explosive violence in Syria

Airstrikes in Syria’s Atareb kill and injure over 150

On Monday, November 13th 2017, at least three airstrikes struck a busy market in the rebel-held town of Atareb in the countryside of Aleppo, Syria. The airstrikes killed at least 61 and left 90 injured.

Amongst those killed, at least six women, five children and three police officers have been identified.

The population in Atareb had recently swelled as many displaced from the conflict elsewhere sought refuge. People from surrounding villages would also come to Atareb to attend the market.

A nearby police station was damaged and the market was completely destroyed in the airstrike, leaving the Syrian Civil Defense search-and-rescue volunteers, the White Helmets, searching through the rubble of the crushed buildings.

It remains unclear whether the airstrike was carried out by Russian or Syrian forces.

AOAV records casualties (i.e. people killed and injured) from explosive violence around the world as reported in English-language news sources. The data cannot capture the full scale of civilian suffering in Syria, but is indicative of the patterns of harm that exist when explosive weapons are used in populated areas.

Last year, AOAV recorded 15,640 deaths and injuries in Syria from explosive violence and of these 85% (13,313) were civilians. When explosive violence was used in populated areas in Syria 97% of the casualties were civilian.

The majority of civilian deaths and injuries from explosive violence last year in Syria were caused by state explosive weapons (56% or 7,500 civilians), with 48% of the total casualties caused by air strikes alone.

The impact of airstrikes has been increasingly devastating to civilians in Syria. In the first half of 2017, AOAV recorded an 82% increase in civilian deaths from explosive weapons – predominantly from airstrikes.

AOAV calls on states to recognise the civilian impact of explosive weapons with wide-area impacts, and to stop using such weapons in populated areas. AOAV data has consistently shown that when explosive weapons are used in populated areas, over 90% of the casualties are likely to be civilians.