The Explosive Weapons Monitor is a civil society initiative that conducts research and analysis on harms from and practices of explosive weapon use in populated areas for the International Network on Explosive Weapons (INEW).


5677

Running annual civilian casualty count 2022


Monthly update on Explosive Weapons use

Casualties

Populated areas

Incidents

167

Deaths

495 civilians

39 armed actors

Injuries

1133 civilians

17 armed actors

Unpopulated areas

Incidents

70

Deaths

30 civilians

253 armed actors

Injuries

63 civilians

113 armed actors

Impact on civilians

Populated areas

97 % of civilians killed and injured in a populated area

Unpopulated areas

20 % of civilians killed and injured in a unpopulated area

At least one death or injury from the use of explosive weapons was recorded in 21 countries and territories in April 2022. Worldwide, there were 237 incidents of explosive weapon use, causing 2,143 casualties, of which 1,721 (80%) were civilians. Some of the most affected countries and territories in terms of civilian casualties from the use of explosive weapons were Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Syria and Ukraine.

There were 26 incidents of explosive weapon use affecting aid access, education and healthcare services in April 2022. The vast majority of incidents took place in Ukraine where explosive weapon use damaged or destroyed hospitals and injured health workers. Four  incidents were also reported in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria. 

This data may include some incidents where the device did not detonate or where there were no civilian casualties, and includes incidents where historical items such as unexploded ordnance were found and which affected the provision of these services.

Monthly incidents by country

0

1-5

6–10

11–50

51–100

> 100

Affected countries in April 2022

Afghanistan

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were 15 incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Afghanistan, resulting in 511 civilian casualties, of whom 186 were killed and 325 injured. There were at least two children and one woman among the civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 98% of the total 519 casualties, as there were also eight recorded armed-actor casualties, three of whom were killed and five injured. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 99% (508), occurred in populated areas. Specifically, 58% (296) of recorded civilian casualties occurred in places of worship, 14% (69) in villages, 5% (30) in entertainment venues, 6% (29) in markets, 5% (25) in urban residential areas, 5% (23) in schools, 4% (22) on roads, 2% (10) in locations in which the detonation of an explosive weapon affects multiple types of spaces within an urban environment , and >1% (4) on public transport. The remaining 0.7% (3) of civilian casualties occurred in other or unknown locations. 

The regions in which civilian casualties were reported in Afghanistan were Kabul (209 civilian casualties), Kunduz (98), Balkh (92), Khost (63), Herat (40), Kunar (6), and Badakhshan (3).

The vast majority of civilian casualties, 85% (436), were caused by non-state actors’ use of explosive weapons. ISIS were the reported perpetrator in the case of 52% (265) of civilian casualties. Unknown non-state forces were the reported perpetrator in the case of 33% (171) of civilian casualties. Pakistan state forces were reportedly responsible for 14% (69) of civilian casualties. Groups of unknown status and name were the perpetrator in the cases of >1% (6) civilian casualties.

The use of IEDs was the cause of 80% (407) of civilian casualties, specifically non-specific IEDs (394), car bombs (10), and roadside bombs (3). Air strikes were the cause of 14% (69) of civilian casualties. Ground-launched weapons were the cause of 7% (35) of civilian casualties, specifically grenades. 

The highest casualty incident occurred on 29 April 2022, when as many as 66 civilians were killed in an ISIS explosion in Khalifa Sahib mosque, in Kabul. 

The number of incidents of explosive weapon use in Afghanistan in April 2022 saw a sharp rise from March, in which three incidents were recorded that caused 29 civilian casualties (nine killed and 20 injured), and also February, in which one reported incident of explosive weapon use caused 15 civilian casualties. 

Sources: Reuters, Al Jazeera, Al Mayadeen

Education

On 19 April 2022, an improvised explosive device detonated inside the Abdul Rahim Shaheed High School in the Dasht-e-Barchi neighbourhood of Kabul, Afghanistan. 

Source: Al Jazeera

Healthcare

On 19 April 2022, a second blast took place as emergency health workers arrived to transport victims from the first explosion to hospitals. At least six people were killed and 17 others wounded. 

Source: Al Jazeera

Azerbaijan

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Azerbaijan, which resulted in the death of one civilian. There were no armed-actor casualties from explosive weapon use recorded in Azerbaijan in April.

On 22 April 2022, one civilian was killed by an anti-personnel mine in Gubadli. 

Sources: AzerNews, Trend

 

Benin

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Benin which resulted in five armed-actor casualties, all of whom were killed. There were no civilian casualties recorded in Benin in April.

On 12 April 2022, five soldiers were killed in Pendjari when their vehicle struck an improvised explosive device, suspected to have been planted by islamist militants. 

Sources: Reuters, Al Jazeera, AFP

 

Burkina Faso

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one recorded incident of explosive weapon use in Burkina Faso, which resulted in 36 civilian casualties, of whom six were killed and 30 injured. Nine armed-actor casualties were also recorded, all of whom died. 

On 24 April 2022, nine soldiers and six civilians were killed, and 30 civilians were injured, in two suicide attacks by the Katibat Macina militant group, in Burkina Faso’s Soum region. The militants were targeting state armed actors.  

Sources: Counter IED Report, Reuters 

 

Colombia

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one recorded incident of explosive weapon use in Colombia, which resulted in 11 armed-actor casualties, six of whom were killed and five injured. There were no recorded civilian casualties. 

On 21 April, six Colombian soldiers were killed and five injured in a roadside bomb explosion in Antioquia. Though the perpetrator of the attack is unknown, it is presumed the bomb was placed by non-state actors.

Sources: BBC 

Democratic Republic of the Congo

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one recorded incident of explosive weapon use in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which resulted in nine civilian casualties, six of whom were killed and three injured. Two armed actors were also killed. 

On 7 April 2022, grenade blasts targeting a bar in a military camp in Goma killed six civilians and two soldiers. A further three civilians were injured. The perpetrators, assumed to be non-state actors, are unknown.   

Sources: AP, Reuters, BBC

India

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were seven incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in India, five of which resulted in nine civilian casualties, one of whom was killed and eight injured. These civilian casualties included at least six children and two women. Civilians accounted for 56% of the total 16 casualties, as there were also seven recorded armed-actor casualties, all of whom were injured. 

The incident with the highest recorded number of civilian casualties took place on 24 April 2022, when five children were injured while playing with a crude bomb in West Bengal. The one civilian fatality took place on 22 April 2022, when a woman was killed by an IED in Jharkhand, reportedly detonated by the Communist Party of India (Maoists, also known as Naxalites).

Sources: New Indian Express, Republic World, Times of India, Deccan Herald

Iran

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Iran, which caused one civilian to be injured. There were no recorded armed-actor casualties. 

On 27 April 2022, one man was injured in a landmine explosion in Urmia.

Sources: KPA, Hengaw

Iraq

April 2022

CASUALTIES

In April 2022, there were 25 incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Iraq, which caused 12 civilian casualties, four of whom were killed and eight injured. Civilians accounted for 16% of the total 75 casualties, as there were also 63 recorded armed-actor casualties, 34 of whom were killed and 29 injured. 

IEDs caused 83% (10) of civilian casualties in Iraq in April 2022, and 68% (43) of armed-actor casualties. 

The incident with the highest recorded number of civilian casualties took place on 22 April 2022, when two civilians were killed and two injured in a roadside bomb explosion in Khanaqin.

Sources: Rudaw, IANS

 

Kyrgyzstan

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one reported incident of explosive weapon use in Kyrgyzstan which caused one civilian casualty. One civilian and one armed actor were injured. 

On 12 April 2022, one border guard and one civilian were wounded by artillery shelling on the Kygryz-Tajik border.

Sources: Akipress

Mali

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022 there were five incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Mali which caused no civilian casualties and 42 armed-actor casualties, 22 of whom were killed and 20 injured.

On 14 April 2022, 12 militants were killed in state-perpetrated airstrikes in Moura. On 24 April 2022, Katibat Macina suicide attacks in a military camp in Sevare, Mopti, killed six soldiers. 

Sources: Crisis Group, AFP, Counter IED Report, Reuters, AFP

Myanmar

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were 10 recorded incidents of explosive weapon use in Myanmar, four of which caused 12 civilian casualties, two of whom were killed and 10 injured. Civilian casualties included at least one child and one woman. Civilians accounted for 18% of the total 67 casualties of explosive weapon use, as 51 armed actors were also reportedly killed and four were injured. 

Ground-launched weapons, specifically artillery shells and shelling, were the cause of 10 civilian casualties, while directly-emplaced weapons, including improvised explosive devices and landmines, were the cause of two civilian casualties. 

The incident that caused the highest number of civilian casualties took place on 6 April 2022, when two civilians were killed and four injured when artillery shells hit a home in Pa Hike Nyin village (Kayah state).

Sources: Irrawaddy

Nigeria

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were six incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Nigeria, resulting in 59 civilian casualties, of whom 17 were killed and 42 injured. There were at least six children among the civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 95% of the total 62 casualties, as there were also three recorded armed-actor casualties, all of whom were killed. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 71% (42), occurred in populated areas. All civilian casualties in poplulated areas took place in entertainment venues. 19% (11) of civilian casualties occurred in agricultural areas, and 10% (6) occurred in other or unknown locations.

The regions in which civilian casualties were reported in Nigeria were Taraba (34 civilian casualties), Borno (11), Yobe (8), and Niger (6). The three armed-actor casualties took place in Katsina. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 58% (34), were caused by non-state actors’ use of explosive weapons, specifically ISIS. Nigerian state forces were responsible for 10% (6) of civilian casualties, specifically the six children. Groups of unknown status and name were the perpetrator in the case of 32% (19) of civilian casualties.

The use of non-specific IEDs were the cause of 90% (53) of civilian casualties. Artillery shells were the cause of 10% (6) of civilian casualties, and 100% of the casualties reported as children. 

The highest casualty incident occurred on 19 April 2022, when six civilians were killed and 19 injured in the bombing of a bar in Taraba, claimed by Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP). Another high-casualty incident occurred on 13 April 2022, when six children were killed in artillery shelling by the Nigerian government, in Niger state. Nigerian air force fighter jets were reportedly targeting militants, but their artillery shells struck the civilian community instead and hit the children as they walked from fetching water.

The number of incidents of explosive weapon use in Nigeria in April saw a rise from March, in which four incidents were recorded that caused two civilian casualties. In February 2022, there were seven reported incidents of explosive violence in Nigeria, which caused 14 civilian casualties. Five people were killed and nine were injured. 

Sources: Reuters, the Cable, Niaja, Daily Trust

 

Pakistan

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were eight recorded incidents of explosive weapon use in Pakistan, six of which caused 22 civilian casualties, 10 of whom were killed and 12 injured. At least two children and six women were recorded amongst the civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 65% of the total 34 recorded casualties, as there were also 12 armed-actor casualties recorded, seven of whom were killed and five injured. 

Directly-emplaced weapons, specifically improvised explosive devices, were the cause of 82% (18) of civilian casualties, and ground-launched weapons, specifically grenades, caused 18% (4) of civilian casualties. 

Sources: BBC, Al Jazeera, AP

 

Education

On 26 April 2022, a female suicide bomber detonated herself near the gate of the Confucius Institute at Karachi University and killed four people aboard a minibus, including three Chinese teachers posted from Bejing. The separatist group Baloch Liberation Army claimed responsibility for the blast. 

Sources: AFP, Associated Press of Pakistan, Radio Free Asia, Reuters and The New Arab

Philippines

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were two incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in the Philippines, one of which caused four civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 40% of the total casualties in the Philippines, as one armed actor was killed and six injured in a landmine explosion on 04 April 2022.

On 24 April 2022, four civilians were injured when an IED exploded on a bus in Maguindanao.

Sources: Manila Times, ABS-CBN, PNA

 

Russia

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Russia that resulted in two civilian casualties. There were no recorded armed actor casualties.

On 25 April 2022, two civilians were injured in Ukrainian shelling of Russia’s Belgorod region. 

Sources: Reuters 

 

Somalia

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were four incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Somalia, three of which caused 25 civilian casualties, nine of whom were killed and 16 injured. Civilians accounted for 64% of the total 39 casualties of explosive weapons, as there were also 14 armed-actor casualties, all of whom were killed. 

Directly-emplaced weapons, specifically improvised explosive devices, caused 52% (13) of civilian casualties in Somalia in April 2022. 

The incident with the highest recorded number of civilian casualties took place on 22 April 2022, when six civilians were killed and seven injured in a bomb blast perpetrated by Al-Shabaab, in Mogadishu. 

Source: Al Jazeera, AP

Syria

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were 38 incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Syria, which resulted in 39 civilian casualties, of whom 11 were killed and 28 injured. There were at least five children and six women among the civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 33% of the total 119 casualties, as there were also 80 recorded armed-actor casualties, 34 of whom were killed and 46 injured. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 74% (29), occurred in populated areas. Specifically, 46% (18) occurred in villages, 15% (6) in entertainment venues, 8% (3) in urban residential areas, 5% (2) in locations in which the detonation of an explosive weapon affects multiple types of spaces within an urban environment, and 3% (1) on a road. The remaining 23% (9) of civilian casualties occurred in other or unknown locations. 

The regions in which civilian casualties were reported in Syria were Aleppo (20 civilian casualties), Hasakah (7), Deir Ezzor (5), Idlib (4), Raqqa (2), and Damascus (1).

The majority of civilian casualties, 67% (26), were caused by ground-launched weapons, specifically shelling, 49% (19), and artillery shells, 18% (7). Directly-emplaced weapons were the cause of 26% (10) of civilian casualties. Specifically, improvised explosive devices were the cause of 23% (9) of civilian casualties, and landmines caused 3% (1) of civilian casualties. Air-launched explosive weapons, specifically air-dropped bombs, caused 8% (3) of civilian casualties. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 38% (15), were caused by groups of unknown status and name. State actors caused 36% (14) of civilian casualties. Specifically, Turkish state forces were the reported perpetrator in the case of 26% (10) of civilian casualties, and Syrian state forces in the case of 10% (4) of civilian casualties. Non-state actors’ use of explosive weapons caused 26% (10) of civilian casualties. Specifically, ISIS were the reported perpetrator in the case of 13% (5) of civilian casualties, and unknown non-state forces in the case of 13% (5) of civilian casualties. 

The number of incidents of explosive weapon use in Syria in April saw a rise from March, in which 25 incidents were recorded and 35 civilian casualties (11 killed and 24 injured). In February 2022, there 54 reported incidents of explosive violence in Syria, which caused 133 civilian casualties (45 killed and 88 injured). 

Sources: SOHR I, Kurdistan24, SOHR II, SOHR III, SouthFront, SOHR IV, SOHR V, SOHR VI, ANHA, Airwars I, Airwars II, SOHR VII, Daily Sabah, AFP, SOHR VIII

Aid access

On 09 April 2022, two armed actors on a motorcycle opened fire on a United Nations Relief a and Works Agency healthcare centre at the Daraa Refugee Camp in Dera'a City in Southern Syria, and threw an explosive device inside the compound, causing material damage. 

Source: Palestinian Return Centre

Education

On 04 April 2022, shelling by Syrian forces hit 50 metres away from the Al-Amal School in Idlib governorate in Syria, killing four boys who were on their way to school. 

Sources: AP and Save the Children

Turkey

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Turkey that resulted in one armed actor being killed. There were no recorded civilian casualties in Turkey in April 2022. 

On 20 April 2022, one prison guard was killed in an IED explosion on a bus, in Bursa. 

Sources: Reuters

 

Ukraine

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there were 107 incidents of explosive weapon use recorded in Ukraine, which resulted in 973 civilian casualties, of whom 270 were killed and 703 injured. There were at least 24 children and nine women among the civilian casualties. Civilians accounted for 90% of the total 1,076 casualties, as there were also 103 recorded armed-actor casualties, 100 of whom were killed and three injured. 

The majority of civilian casualties, 98% (958), occurred in populated areas. Specifically, 46% (444) of recorded civilian casualties occurred in locations in which the detonation of an explosive weapon affects multiple types of spaces within an urban environment, 26% (251) in urban residential areas, 14% (132) in transport-related infrastructure, 11% (107) in villages, 2% (17) in humanitarian infrastructure, >1% (3) in hospitals, >1% (2) on roads, >1% (2) in commercial premises, and >1% (2) in agricultural lands. The remaining 1% (13) of civilian casualties occurred in other or unknown locations. 

The regions in which civilian casualties were reported in Ukraine were Kharkiv (336 civilian casualties), Donetsk (255), Mykolaiv (195), Luhansk (49), Kyiv (31), Odessa (24), Vinnytsia (23), Lviv (18), Zaporizhzhia (15), Dnipropetrovsk (10), Poltava (10), and Kherson (7). 

The vast majority of civilian casualties, 99% (968), were caused by state actors’ use of explosive weapons, specifically Russian armed forces. Groups of unknown status and name were the perpetrator in the cases of >1% (5) civilian casualties.

The use of ground-launched explosive weapons were the cause of 95% (925) of civilian casualties, specifically shelling (654), rockets (150), missiles (102), artillery shells (19). Air-launched weapons, specificall air strikes, were the cause of 2% (15) of civilian casualties. Combined explosive weapons were the cause of >1% (6) of civilian casualties. Directly emplaced weapons, specifically landmines, were the cause of >1% (6). 

The highest casualty incident occurred on 08 April 2022, when at least 39 civilians were killed and 87 injured in a Russian rocket strike on a train station being used for evacuations, in Kramatorsk, Donetsk region. 

The number of incidents of explosive weapon use in Ukraine in April saw a decrease from March, in which 116 incidents were recorded and 1, 292 civilian casualties (844 killed and 448 injured). 

Sources: Reuters, Al Jazeera

Aid access

In April 2022, two incidents of explosive weapon use affecting aid access were recorded in Ukraine. 

On 16 April 2022, a Russian missile destroyed a World Central Kitchen partner restaurant in Kharkiv city that provides food for people facing hunger, wounding four staff members, and causing substantial damage. One person was killed outside.

On 30 April 2022, the office of the Ukrainian Red Cross in Dobropillia city, Donetsk oblast, was bombed, alongside five residential buildings. 

Sources: Today, Ukrainian Red Cross

Healthcare

In April 2022, 20 incidents of explosive weapon use affecting the provision of healthcare were recorded in Ukraine. Hospitals, including specialist units such as an oncology hospital, surgical hospital, a Centre for Disease Prevention, and a maternity unit,  were damaged and in some cases destroyed, and at least three health workers were injured. 

In one incident on 19 April 2022, a Russian fired rocket hit a multidisciplinary hospital, destroying the dialysis department and operating room, depriving hundreds of patients of life-saving medical treatment.

Source: Twitter

Yemen

April 2022

Casualties

In April 2022, there was one incident of explosive weapon use recorded in Yemen, which caused five civilian casualties, two of whom were killed and three injured. There were no recorded armed-actor casualties.

On 08 April 2022, two civilians were killed and three injured in an artillery shelling attack by Saudi Arabian military forces, in Saada.

Sources: Al Mayadeen, Morning Star 

 


Annual count 2022

Recorded casualties

2,500 2,250 2,000 1,750 1,500 1,250 1,000 750 500 250 0 Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Civilian deaths and injuries in populated areas Civilian deaths and injuries in unpopulated areas Armed actors deaths and injuries in populated areas Armed actors deaths and injuries in unpopulated areas

Recorded incidents affecting aid access, education and healthcare

Aid Education Healthcare 80 90 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec

Explosive Weapons Type

Ai r -launched Ground-launched Directly emplaced Combination 1,580 Civilian casualties 8 Aid access incidents 3 Aid access incidents 9 Aid access incidents 1 Aid access incidents 4 Education incidents 16 Education incidents 13 Education incidents 1 Education incidents 13 Healthcare incidents 65 Healthcare incidents 10 Healthcare incidents 1 Healthcare incidents 2,432 Civilian casualties 1,568 Civilian casualties 79 Civilian casualties Recorded incidents between 1 January and 30 April 2022 83% of total 69% of total 48% of total 84% of total