The American-led coalition fighting Islamic State militants in Iraq is conducting an investigation into coalition airstrikes that some reports say recently killed more than 100 civilians in Mosul’s Jidideh neighborhood.
A coalition statement said it has “opened a formal civilian casualty credibility assessment on the allegation.”The statement also said coalition planes “routinely strike” IS targets in the neighborhood, and coalition forces “take all reasonable precautions during the planning and execution of airstrikes to reduce the risk of harm to civilians.”
While Col. John Thomas – a spokesman for the U.S. Central Command – told The New York Times the military was not sure if an explosion in western Mosul was caused by an American or other coalition airstrike, or an IS “bomb or bobby trap,” an Iraqi officer told the newspaper he knew exactly what happened.
Major General Maan al-Saadi – a commander of the Iraqi special forces – told The Times that his men had called in a coalition airstrike to deal with snipers on the roofs of three houses in Mosul Jidideh.He said, however, his forces did not know the basements of the houses were filled with civilians.
Civilians, humanitarian aid groups and monitoring officials have warned about the possibility of increased civilian casualties because of an increasing demand for airstrikes and artillery.