Syria civil war report: September was deadliest month this year

Syrian Muslims are pictured visiting graves of relatives at the local cemetery during the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr, in Douma, Syria. A new report suggests September was the deadliest month in the Syrian civil war so far in 2017. Photo by EPA/MOHAMMED BADRA

Oct. 1 (UPI) — September was the deadliest month in Syria’s civil war so far this year, according to a report from a monitoring group.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights tallied September’s death toll at 3,300. The group estimated 995 civilians were killed. According to the group’s observers, roughly 70 percent of the civilian fatalities were caused by airstrikes carried out by Russia, Sryia and the U.S.-led coalition.

SOHR relies on a network of activists in Syria to inform their casualty estimates.

September’s fighting killed 207 children younger than 18 and 148 women older than 18. According to SOHR, 395 civilians were killed by airstrikes carried out by Syrian and Russian planes and helicopters. International coalition forces led by the United States were responsible for 282 civilian deaths, SOHR reported.

“Syrian Observatory pledges to continue to monitor and document the massacres, violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against the Syrian people, in addition to the publication of statistics about them in order to stop the perpetration of these crimes,” the group wrote online.

Last week, Human Rights Watch issued a report calling on the U.S. coalition to avoid civilian casualties by gathering better intel before executing airstrikes. The report pointed to a pair of airstrikes, involving a school and market, where civilian deaths were especially significant.

“Although [Islamic State] fighters were also at these sites, the high civilian death toll raises concerns that military forces of the U.S.-led coalition failed to take necessary precautions to avoid and minimize civilian casualties, a requirement under international humanitarian law,” the report said.


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