Last updated: 03 December 2018


All known casualties

Several thousand

Casualties in 2017[1]

Annual total




Survival outcome

989 killed; 911 injured; 6 unknown


Device type causing casualties

319 antipersonnel mine; 18 antivehicle mine; 887 improvised mine; 431 unspecified mine; 17 unexploded submunition;185 ERW; 49 unknown mine/ERW device

Civilian status

1,703 civilians; 1 deminer; 89 military; and 113 unknown

Age and gender

1,174 adults:

98 women; 765 men; 311 unknown

491 children:

214 boys; 51 girls; 226 unknown

241unknown age: 6 male; 4 female; 231 unknown sex


The Monitor identified 1,906 mine/ERW casualties in the Syrian Arab Republic (not including the occupied Golan Heights) from multiple sources for 2017. However, since the conflict began in 2011, annual recorded totals of mine/ERW casualties are thought to be an undercount. It is certain that the actual number of casualties occurring in Syria in 2017, as in past years, was significantly higher than the annual total recorded.[2]

Casualties recorded in the Monitor date for 2017 occurred in 12 provinces of Syria: the largest portion (46%, or 880) were in Raqqa where extensive mine use in civilian areas was widely reported, followed by 29% (or 550) in Aleppo, and the remaining casualties were reported in Dar’a, Damascus, Damascus Suburbs, Deir Ezzor, Hama, Hasakeh, Homs, Idlib, Quneitra, and Sweida.

There is no comprehensive, or country-wide mine/ERW casualty data collection mechanism in place and the ongoing conflict hampers the recording of casualties by the various actors that capture such information. Nevertheless, several organizations have maintained efforts to record casualties of conflict, including those resulting from mines/ERW. The Monitor has extracted, analyzed, and compiled relevant mine/ERW casualty information for 2017 in a unified dataset. Notably, most data reported by these diverse actors for 2017 was unique, as Monitor analysis showed little duplication of mine/ERW casualties reported.

Cluster munition casualties

The Monitor identified 187 cluster munition casualties in 2017. As in previous years, the overwhelming majority of recorded casualties (170) were caused by cluster munition attacks, while 17 casualties caused by unexploded submunitions were recorded.

As with mines and other ERW, due to the challenges of collecting data, including the security situation and ongoing conflict, the number of cluster munition casualties caused by both attacks and unexploded submunitions is likely to be underreported. It is possible that some persons recorded as injured by other mine and remnants types were actually unexploded submunition casualties.

The 187 cluster munition casualties in 2017 were recorded in five governorates: Aleppo, Hama, Idlib, Raqqa, and Rural Damascus.

The 187 cluster munition casualties recorded in 2017 is a significant decrease from the 860 cluster munition casualties recorded in 2016. In 2015, 248 cluster munition casualties were recorded (231 from strikes).[3] In 2014, 383 casualties were recorded (329 from strikes); in 2013, 1,001; and in 2012, 583 (see previous Monitor casualty reports for further details).

Prior to new use of cluster munitions in 2012, at least five casualties from unexploded cluster submunitions had been recorded in Syria, including four child casualties in 2007.[4]

[1] Unless otherwise indicated, casualty data for 2017 is based on: the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED) data for Syria, January to December 2017, accessed at; GICHD-SIPRI antivehicle mine database provided by email from Ursign Hofmann, Policy Advisor, GICHD, 22 February 2018; email from Nadim Houry, Human Rights Watch, 4 April 2018 (data from Kurdish Red Crescent); Casualty data from Regional Emergency Response Office on the Syrian Crisis, Humanity & Inclusion (HI), 5 March 2018; Mayday Rescue/Syrian Civil Defence (White Helmets) Incidents Reports for the period January through December 2017; and the Violations Documentation Unit database accessed at

[2] The vast majority of casualties were civilian. In many cases the civilian or military status recorded in the Monitor dataset for Syria is based on the activity at the time of the incident, for example if it was in combat the casualty is recorded as military whereas those engaged in everyday activities such as farming, housework and playing are recorded as civilians.

[3] An additional 54 fatalities reported by the VDC were attributed to the use of cluster munitions alongside other weapons, including thermobaric weapons. These casualties were not counted in the Monitor total of cluster munition casualties for 2015 because they did not exclusively identify the cause of fatality as cluster munitions.

[4] HI, Circle of Impact: The Fatal Footprint of Cluster Munitions on People and Communities (Brussels: HI, May 2007), p. 132.