Explosive violence in SyriaExplosive violence by the Russian armed forces

Suspected Russian airstrikes near Syrian capital kill at least 20

Yesterday, January 3rd 2018, airstrikes on the Syrian town of Misraba killed at least 20 and injured more than 40, as at least four bombs flattened buildings across the area.

Of those killed, at least one was a child and 11 were women. Many of the wounded were said to be in a critical condition and so the death toll is expected to rise.

The strikes were thought to have been carried out by Russian jets, who have been assisting government forces in their escalation of military operations in Eastern Ghouta in recent months. The military operation has been accused of targeting residential areas and of using starvation as a weapon of war. Aid deliveries and medical evacuation have also been blocked in the area.

In other nearby towns in the rebel enclave, at least 10 were killed in airstrikes.

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.

In the first nine months of last year, AOAV recorded 11,857 deaths and injuries in Syria from explosive violence and of these 85% were civilians. When explosive violence was used in populated areas in Syria, 97% of the casualties were civilian.

The majority (78%) of civilian deaths and injuries from explosive violence last year in Syria were caused by state use of explosive weapons, with 71% of the total casualties caused by air strikes alone.

Compared to the same period in 2016, AOAV has recorded a 51% increase in civilian casualties from airstrikes. When examining civilian deaths alone, the increase is 89%.

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.