Last updated: 13 July 2017

Casualties Overview

All known casualties by end 2016 (mine/ERW)


Casualties occurring in 2016 (mine/ERW)


2016 mine/ERW casualties by survival outcome

67 killed; 2,022 injured; 15 unknown (2015: 168 killed; 820 injured)

2016 mine/ERW casualties by device type

26 antipersonnel mine; 103 antivehicle mine; 5 improvised mine (victim-activated improvised explosive devices, IEDs); 9 unspecified mine; 18 unexploded submunition; and 1,943 undifferentiated mine/explosive remnants of war (ERW)

2016 cluster munition casualties

There were at least 38 new cluster munition casualties in 2016.

These include casualties due to direct use (20, cluster munition attacks, which are not included in mine/ERW casualty totals) and unexploded submunitions (18, which are included in mine/ERW casualty totals) -- see below for more details on these cluster munition casualties.



The Monitor identified at least 2,104 mine/ERW casualties reported for the Republic of Yemen for 2016. Although the ongoing conflict prevented the operation of an adequate national casualty surveillance mechanism, the Monitor recorded the details of 161 casualties, of which 67 were killed, 79 injured, and the outcome for 15 was unknown. These casualties were identified from the following sources: Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch (HRW), ICRC, Mwatana for Human Rights, the Geneva Center for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD), and various media sources. Several other organizations reported that they had provided assistance to mine/ERW survivors, but either did not record or share causality data details.

The ICRC reported the largest number of casualties in 2016 of any source for Yemen, with 2,037 people injured by mines/ERW admitted into 46 ICRC-supported hospitals.[1] However, no demographic details were available for casualties in ICRC-reported statistics for persons wounded in Yemen.

Among the 161 casualties with additional details recorded by the Monitor (67 killed, 79 injured, and 15 of unknown outcome), 63 were male, 13 female, and 85 of unknown gender. Seventy-two were adults, 41 were children, and 48 were unknown (51 men, eight women, 12 boys, five girls, and 85 unknown).

The majority, 103, were caused by antivehicle mines, 26 by antipersonnel mines, five by improvised mines, nine by unspecified mines. Eighteen were caused by unexploded submunitions. However, this data is not necessarily representative of the type of devices that caused the most casualties, as different sources had different areas of focus (Amnesty International reported specifically on cluster munitions, and GICHD reported specifically on antivehicle mines).

Among the five casualties that were reported to have resulted from improvised mines, some were described as having been constructed from manufactured mines. These included antivehicle mines adapted to detonate as antipersonnel devices and multiple interconnected mines, or so-called daisy-chained IEDs.

Ninety-three of the identified casualties were civilians, while 21 were military. Seven demining casualties were identified. The civil status of 40 casualties was unknown.

Several sources noted that many hundreds, or some thousands, of casualties resulting from mine/ERW incidents occurred in Yemen in 2016.

HRW reported that mines appeared to have killed and injured hundreds of civilians.[2] In February 2017, the health ministry of Yemen based in Aden, told HRW that, following an end to hostilities within the city in mid-2015, Aden’s hospitals were receiving about seven to eight landmine casualties weekly, and continued to receive landmine casualties.[3] From late April to June 2016, a hospital in Taizz was reported to have treated 50 people who had one or more limbs amputated, all believed to have been caused by landmines.[4]

During 2016 and early 2017, the Yemen Mine Action Center’s (YEMAC) office in Sana’a registered 1,020 casualties, but as the Information Management System for Mine Action (IMSMA) had not been functioning since the beginning of 2016, YEMAC was unable to provide details for these casualties.[5] The YEMAC office in Aden registered 566 casualties up to March 2017. Of these, 528 were men, 36 were women, and two were children.[6] Of the 566 casualties, 101 people had lost one or more limbs.[7]

UNICEF’s Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism on grave child rights violations collects information about mine/ERW survivors, but as of June 2017 no information was available.[8]

The Yemen Association for Landmine Survivors (YALS) reported that 26 survivors requested assistance in 2016, but it was not reported whether these survivors were all injured as a result of mine/ERW incidents that occurred in 2016. Fourteen were men, seven were boys, one was a woman, and four were girls.[9]

The 2016 total of 2,037 mine/ERW casualties is more than double the 988 reported for 2015, including the ICRC-reported statistic of 812 persons wounded by mines/ERW admitted to healthcare facilities in 2015.[10] Those casualties were reported to have occurred during 2015, and thus were included in the Monitors’ annual global total of persons injured for that year.[11] In 2014, the Monitor identified 24 casualties from mines/ERW from YEMAC casualty data and other sources. The ICRC reported that five mine/ERW casualties received treatment in 2014.[12] However, there was likely significant underreporting due to the challenges facing data collection caused by the intensified armed conflict.[13] Prior to 2015, the casualty total for 2012 of 263 casualties was the highest annual number recorded by the Monitor for Yemen since research began in 1999, and was due to the conflict and increased population movement in that year.[14]

Through the end of 2016, there were at least 8,958 mine/ERW casualties identified in Yemen.[15] A Landmine Impact Survey (LIS) identified 4,904 casualties through July 2000, of which 2,560 people were killed and 2,344 were injured.[16] In 2010, it was reported in the media that there had been 35,000 mine/ERW casualties in Yemen since 1995.[17]

Cluster munition casualties

In 2016, 38 casualties of cluster munitions were reported in Yemen.[18]

Of this total, 20 were casualties of cluster munition attacks: at least 10 people were killed in attacks (one man, one boy, five children of unknown gender, and three of unknown age and gender), and 10 were injured (one man, one child of unknown gender, and eight of unknown age and gender).

Unexploded submunitions resulted in 18 casualties. Eight people were killed by submunitions (three men, two boys, one child of unknown gender, and two of unknown age and gender) and 10 people were injured (two men, four boys, one child of unknown gender, and three casualties of unknown age and gender).

Of the total cluster munition casualties reported in 2016, 84% (32) were civilians, three were deminers, and three were of unknown civil status. Cluster munition casualties were reported in Hajjan, Sa’ada, and Sana’a provinces.

The 38 cluster munition casualties reported in 2016 represented a decrease in the 104 reported in 2015. The number of casualties reported as a result of cluster munition attacks reduced from 94 to 20. However, the number of unexploded submunition casualties increased from 10 in 2015 to 18 in 2016.

Prior to the 2015 new use of cluster munitions, a cluster munition attack in Yemen in December 2009 was reported to have killed 55 people, including 14 women and 21 children.[19] In 2013, it was reported that unexploded submunitions remaining from the 2009 attack had killed four civilians and injured 13 in two incidents, one in December 2009 a few days after the attack and the other in January 2012.[20]

[1] ICRC, “Annual Report 2016,” Geneva, May 2017, p. 504.

[2] HRW, “Yemen: Houthi-Saleh Forces Using Landmines,” 20 April 2017.

[3] Ibid.

[4] HRW, “Yemen: Houthi Landmines Claim Civilian Victims,” 8 September 2016.

 [5] Interview with Mohamed Al Osta, YEMAC, conducted by with Aisha Saeed, Researcher, Cluster Munition Monitor, Sana’a, April 2017.

[6] Information provided by UNDP Aden officer, in email from Aisha Saeed, Cluster Munition Monitor, 12 April 2017. Some slightly differing casualty figures were reported for the period, accordingly: by February 2017, 566 people injured by ERW in Aden, Abyan, and Lahj governorates and by March 2017, 632 people were injured by ERW since March 2015 in Aden, Abyan, Lahj, Al-Dhale, and Taizz. At least 17 wounded by landmines, including nine by antipersonnel mines. Email from Iskander Yousef, Danish Demining Group (DDG), 12 April 2017.

[7] Email from Iskander Yousef, DDG, 12 April 2017.

[8] Response to Monitor questionnaire from Micaela Pasini, Head of Child Protection, UNICEF, 5 June 2017.

[9] Email from Mohammed Alabdali, Deputy Chair, YALS, 8 April 2016.

[10] The 812 mine/ERW survivors were among of 28,565 weapon-wounded persons in total admitted to ICRC-supported healthcare facilities in 2015. ICRC, “Annual Report 2015,” Geneva, 2016, p. 526; and email from Rima Kamal, ICRC Yemen, 7 June 2016.

[11] The ICRC data was not disaggregated by age or gender, however the ICRC noted that the majority of casualties were male. ICRC, “Annual Report 2015,” Geneva, 2016, p. 526; and email from Rima Kamal, ICRC Yemen, 7 June 2016.

[12] ICRC, “Annual Report 2014,” Geneva, May 2015, p. 515.

[13] Ongoing conflict in both the northern and southern parts of Yemen prevented YEMAC from collecting and verifying casualty data from these areas. UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), “Humanitarian Bulletin Yemen,” Issue30, 11 August–3 September 2014.

[14] Wethaq Foundation for Civil Orientation, “Landmine Victims in Kushar District, Hajja: Death Creeping Towards Innocent People,” undated but 2012; “Landmine victims in southern Yemen on the rise,” Reliefweb, 13 June 2012; and “Wanting to go home but threatened by landmines, Ahim area IDPs caught in limbo,” Yemen Times, 7 February 2013.

[15] ICRC, “Annual Report 2016,” Geneva, May 2017, p. 504; Monitor media scanning for calendar years 2011 through 2017; interviews with Ali Al-Kadri, YEMAC, in Geneva, 28 May 2013; and with Ahmed Alawi, YEMAC, 25 February 2014; email from Yuko Osawa, UNICEF Yemen, 7 May 2014; Monitor media scanning for calendar year 2012; Wethaq Foundation for Civil Orientation, “Landmine Victims in Kushar District, Hajja: Death Creeping Towards Innocent People,” undated but 2012; UNDSS, “Yemen Daily Report,” 27 March 2012, and 2 April 2012; email from Henry Thompson, DDG Yemen, 15 March 2013; telephone interview with Ahmed Aalawi, YEMAC, 13 March 2013; UNICEF, “Unexploded ordnance and landmines killing more children in Yemen,” Sanaa, 20 April 2012; Monitor interview with neighbor of victim, 27 March 2012; and interview with Ahmed Alawi, YEMAC, Sanaa, 8 March 2011.

[16] Survey Action Center, “Landmine Impact Survey Republic of Yemen Executive Summary,” July 2000, p. 15.

[17] Shatha Al-Harazi, “Yemen landmines kill 12 children this year,” UNICEF New Zealand,22 December 2010.

[18] Amnesty International, “Yemen: Children among civilians killed and maimed in cluster bomb ‘minefields,’” 23 May 2016;HRW, “Yemen: Brazil-Made Cluster Munitions Harm Civilians,” 23 December 2016; “Saudi jets pound Yemen, kill civilian by cluster bomb,” Press TV, 7 January 2016; “Four peopled wounded in Sa’ada,” Saba Net, 27 January 2016; “Bomblet kills child, injures another in Sa’ada,” Saba Net, 14 June 2016; “Bomblet injures three in Sa’ada,” Saba Net, 1 July 2016; “A cluster bomb made in America shattered lives in Yemen’s capital,” The Washington Post, 10 July 2016; “Saudi jets attack Yemen’s Sa’ade with cluster bombs,” Abna, 30 August 2016; and “Banned by 119 countries, US cluster bombs continue to orphan Yemeni children,” The Intercept, 14 December 2016.

[19] There was a credible report of a cluster munition strike in Yemen in December 2009 that killed 55 people, including 14 women and 21 children. Amnesty International, “Wikileaks cable corroborates evidence of US airstrikes in Yemen,” 1 December 2010. In addition, although there is no specific data available on casualties, cluster munitions remnants have been recorded in northwestern Yemen, apparently following use in 2009/2010 in Sa’ada governorate near the border with Saudi Arabia. Interviews with Abdul Raqeeb Fare, Deputy Director, YEMAC, Sanaa, 7 March 2013; and with Ali al-Kadri, YEMAC, in Geneva, 28 May 2013; and email from John Dingley, UNDP Yemen, 9 July 2013.

[20] HRW, “Between a Drone and Al-Qaeda,” 22 October 2013; and interview with Ahmed Alawi, Executive Officer, YEMAC, 25 February 2014. Previously, no confirmed cluster munition remnants casualties had been reported. Emails from Yuko Osawa, UNICEF Yemen, 7 May 2014; and from from Ali Al-Kadri, YEMAC, 5 October 2013.