A total of 2,371 civilians, including 562 children, were killed in the battles to capture the province of Raqqa in northern Syria from ISIS, the Syrian Network for Human Rights said on Thursday. The battles also led to the displacement of nearly half a million others.
In a report the rights group published under the title “Ridding Raqqa of ISIS Costed Extraordinarily Too Much in Lives and Resources,” SNHR said that military operations by the various parties led to the displacement of nearly 450,000 people over a period of nearly 11 months. The Network pointed out that aerial attacks by the international anti-ISIS coalition forces and shelling by the militia of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were responsible for the displacement of nearly 300,000 people.
The military operations were carried out as part of two separate campaingns by the international coalition forces and SDF as well as by the alliance of Russia and the Assad regime.
The report indicated that in the first battle of Raqqa between 6 November 2016 and 19 October 2017, 2323 civilians were killed, including 543 children, 346 women and at least 99 massacres.
The first battle of Raqqa, which was fought in the period between November 6, 2016 – October 19, 201, claimed the lives of 2,323 civilians, including 543 children and 346 women, the monitoring group said. It added that at least 99 massacres were recorded in the same period.
According to the report, the international coalition forces were responsible for the death of 1,321 civilians, including 383 children and 247 women. These forces perpetrated 87 massacres during the reporting period. The ISIS extremist group was responsible for the death of 639 civilians, including 109 children and 49 women. ISIS committed eight massacres. SDF militias, meanwhile, killed 309 civilians, including 51 children and 50 women, and were responsible for four massacres.
The Network went on to say that it had recorded no fewer that 100 attacks on vital civilian facilities, 81 of which were launched by the international coalition forces, seven by the SDF militia, and 12 by ISIS.
According to the report, no fewer than 1,896 individuals were detained in the reporting period, including 28 children and 33 women. Out of those, 1,279 people were detained by the SDF militias, including 19 children and 22 women, while ISIS detained 617 people, including nine children and 11 women.
The Network noted that the second battle of Raqqa, which was fought by Syrian-Russian alliance forces between July and October of 2017, claimed the lives of 48 civilians, including 19 children and eight women. The Russian and Assad regime forces committed no fewer than five massacres and carried out 11 attacks on vital civilian facilities in the same period. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)