Including 827 Civilians in December
SNHR has published its periodic death toll report for the month of December 2016 in which it documented the killing of 827 civilians in December and 16,913 civilians in 2016 at the hands of the main influential parties in Syria.
The report notes that SNHR team encounters difficulties in documenting victims from armed opposition factions as many of those victims are killed on battlefronts and not inside cities. Also, we aren’t able to obtain details such as names, pictures and other important details on account of the armed opposition forces’ unwillingness to reveal such information for security concerns among other reasons. Therefore, the actual number of victims is much greater than what is being recorded.
On the other side, the report affirms that it is almost impossible to access information about victims from Syrian regime forces or from ISIS and the margin of error is considerably higher due to the lack of any applicable methodology in this type of documentation. The Syrian government and ISIS don’t publish, reveal, or record their victims. From our perspective, the statistics published by some groups on this category of victims are fictitious and are not based on any actual data.
The report includes the death toll of 2016, where Syrian regime forces killed 8736 civilians including 1984 children and 1237 women. Also, among the victims were 447 individuals, including two children and seven women, who died due to torture.
Furthermore, forces believed to be Russian killed 3967 civilians including 1042 children and 684 women.
Additionally, 146 civilians including 24 children and 23 women were killed at the hands of the Kurdish Self-management forces. Also, among the victims were six individuals, including one woman, who died due to torture.
Extremist Islamic groups killed 1528 civilians – 1510 civilians were killed at the hands of ISIS including 258 children and 213 women. Also among the victims, were eight individuals who died due to torture. As for Fateh Al Sham Front (Formerly Al Nussra), 18 civilians including one woman and four individuals who died due to torture were killed by the Front.
1048 civilians, including 289 children and 210 women, were killed at the hands of armed opposition factions. Also, among the victims were 10 individuals, including one child, who died due to torture.
On the other side, 537 civilians were killed by the international coalition forces including 158 children and 98 women.
Moreover, 951 civilians including 168 children and 96 women have either died drowning as they were fleeing by sea or in bombings that SNHR hasn’t been able to identify its perpetrators or were carried out by unidentified armed groups to SNHR in addition to the victims who fell in the indiscriminate bombardment of the Turkish land and air forces. Among the victims who fall into this category was one civilian who died to torture.
The report breaks down the death toll of December 2016 where Syrian regime forces killed 411 civilians including 114 children (four children are killed every day) and 42 women. Additionally, among the victims were 19 civilians who died due to torture.
Out of the total number of civilian victim, 38% were children and women which is an explicit indicator on the deliberate targeting of civilians by the Syrian regime forces.
The report notes that forces we believe are Russian killed 151 civilians including 39 children and 13 women.
Additionally, the report documented the killing of nine civilians, including one woman at the hands of the Self-management forces (Primarily consisting of the Democratic Union Party forces – branch for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party).
Furthermore, the report notes that ISIS killed 47civilians including seven children and five women.
The report also records that 115 civilians including 27 children and 22 women were killed by armed opposition factions. Also, among the victims were two civilians who died due to torture.
In addition, the report records that 60 civilians, including 16 children and five women, were killed by the international coalition forces in December.
The report documents that 34 civilians, including seven children and two women, have either died drowning as they were fleeing by sea or in bombings that SNHR hasn’t been able to identify its perpetrators or were carried out by unidentified armed groups to SNHR in addition to the victims who fell in the indiscriminate bombardment of the Turkish land and air forces.
The report emphasizes that Syrian regime forces and Russian forces have violated the international human rights law which guarantees the right to life. Furthermore, evidences and proofs, according to hundreds of eyewitnesses’ accounts, suggest that 90% at least of the widespread and single attacks were directed against civilians and civil facilities.
Also, ISIS perpetrated many crimes of extrajudicial killing which constitute war crimes.
Moreover, some of the armed opposition factions committed crimes of extrajudicial killing that qualify as war crimes. Also, Self-management forces and international coalition forces have both committed war crimes that manifested in the crime of extrajudicial killing.
The report calls on the Security Council and the international community to uphold their responsibilities in relation to the crimes of killing that is being perpetrated ceaselessly and to apply pressure on the Syrian government to stop the deliberate and indiscriminate bombardment of civilians.
Finally, the report considers the Russian regime, all Shiite militias, and ISIS as foreign parties that are effectively involved in the killings and holds all of these parties and the financiers and supports of the Syrian regime legally and judicially responsible.