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Explosive Violence Monitor: 2016

The 2016 report presents the findings of the sixth consecutive year of Action on Armed Violence’s (AOAV) Explosive Violence Monitoring Project (EVMP). The EVMP tracks the impact of explosive weapon use world-wide as reported in the English-language media. 

In 2016, AOAV recorded 45,624 deaths and injuries as a result of the use of explosive weapons around the world. And, as with previous years, civilians continue to bear the burden of explosive violence. Of those harmed, 70% were reported to be civilians – 32,088. 

The full report is available for download here:  Explosive Violence Monitor 2016

Key findings

  • AOAV recorded 45,624 deaths and injuries by explosive weapons in 2,300 incidents in 2016. Of these, 32,088  were civilians – 70%. 
  • When explosive weapons were used in populated  areas, 92% of those killed and injured were civilians.  This compares to 25% in other areas. 
  • Civilian deaths and injuries in populated areas, represented  89% of all reported civilian deaths and injuries. AOAV recorded the highest number of civilian deaths since it began its monitor in 2011 – a 7% increase compared to the previous year, and a 92% increase compared to 2011. 
  • An 8% increase in civilian harm from air-launched attacks compared to 2015 – with a reported 9,934 civilians worldwide killed and injured, accounting for 31% of all civilian deaths and injuries. 
  • Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, and Turkey saw the highest number of civilian deaths and injuries in 2016. 
  • A further rise in death and injuries in Syria from explosive violence; over 15,000 deaths and injuries in 2016, 51% more than in 2015. 
  • Turkey saw a 113% rise in civilian deaths and injuries in 2016 from explosive violence, compared to 2015. Somalia saw an increase of 83% of the same. 
  • Six countries and territories saw over 1,000 civilian deaths and injuries in 2016. 
  • Incidents were recorded in 70 countries and territories around the world – seven more countries than in 2015. 
  • AOAV recorded 256 suicide bombings in 2016, causing 12,673 deaths and injuries – of which 76% were civilians. 
  • On average 38 civilians were killed and injured by each suicide bombing – an increase of two since 2015. 
  • Civilian deaths and injuries from explosive violence saw a decrease of 2% in 2016 from 2015 – this is owing to the drop in numbers of injuries reported. This is the first year since AOAV began its monitor in which recorded civilian casualties of explosive violence have decreased but could reflect the fact that, with the rising numbers of people killed, less wounded have been reported.

For more information on this report, please contact Iain Overton, AOAV’s Executive Director on +44 (0) 7984 645 145 or at