Explosive violence in Libya

At least 17 civilians killed in airstrike on Libya’s Derna

On Monday, October 30th 2017, an airstrike on a home in Libya’s eastern city of Derna killed at least 17 and injured a further 30. However, some outlets reported a higher casualty number, with some saying that as many as 50 were injured in the strike.

Most the casualties are thought to be women and children, who were visiting a sick relative in al-Fatayah district, where the strike took place. Amongst the casualties is an entire family.

It was reported that a state of emergency was declared at the city’s hospital alongside calls for blood donation.

Whilst Libya accused Egypt of conducting the strike, the United States, the United Kingdom and France, have all conducted recent air operations in Libya.

The U.N. mission in Libya condemned the attack: “Direct or indiscriminate attacks against civilians are prohibited under international humanitarian law, and reminds all parties of their obligations to protect civilians.”

Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) records the harm caused by explosive violence across the globe according to English-language media sources. Libya has been amongst the ten worst impacted countries from explosive violence over last six years (2011-2016).

Last year, AOAV recorded 782 deaths and injuries from explosive violence, of which 40% (309) were civilians. Of civilian deaths and injuries, 32% were caused by air-launched explosives.

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.