Iraq: Military Intervention:Written question - HL1642

Asked on: 02 October 2017
Ministry of Defence
Iraq: Military Intervention
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to investigate unintended civilian casualties arising from UK participation in the US led coalition airstrikes to liberate Mosul; and if so, what resources they (1) have committed, and (2) intend to commit, to that investigation.
Answered by: Earl Howe
Answered on: 12 October 2017

UK airstrikes always follow the principles of international humanitarian law: necessity, proportionality, distinction between combatants and non-combatant civilians, and the prevention of unnecessary suffering. The complex and congested urban environment of Mosul presented particular challenges for those undertaking airstrikes as part of the Coalition support to forces on the ground against Daesh. Our rigorous targeting processes take into account the conditions on the ground, including the potential presence of a civilian population. We undertake a battle damage assessment after every airstrike. This assessment examines all the available records including video, and one of its roles is the identification of any collateral damage, including civilian casualties. If any such assessment indicated anything that should be scrutinised further, a full investigation would be undertaken, with appropriate resources allocated to it. Thus there is no requirement for a further evaluation of the deployment of UK airpower in the campaign against Daesh.

Grouped Questions: HL1641 | HL1643

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