Syria, at least 350,000 people killed during the 10-years’ war

Interior view of the abandoned and bullet-scarred hospital in Quneitra, Syria Interior view of the abandoned and bullet-scarred hospital in Quneitra, Syria Photo by Joel Carillet on iStock

24 September 2021

The UN human rights office declares that the death toll is most certainly under-counted.

350.209 identified individuals – the minimum verifiable number – were killed in the Syrian conflict, between March 2011 and March 2021. Over one in every thirteen were women – 26,727 in total; almost one in every thirteen were children : 27,126 in all. In August 2014 – the last update on the conflict -  deaths amounted to a total of 191,369. This means that from 2014 there has been an 83% increase of conflict-related deaths in Syria. The Governorate of Aleppo registers the highest number of documented killings – 51,731 named individuals killed. It is followed  by Rural Damascus (47,483 deaths), Homs (40,986), Idlib (33,271), Hama (31,993) and Tartus (31,369).

This tremendous war has been going on for 10 years, since March 2011, when protests arose against President Bashar al-Assad, demanding democratic reforms and the release of political prisoners. By December 2011 the uprisings had already turned into an armed conflict which generated a dramatic refugee crisis (5.6 million Syrians are refugees and 6 million are internally displaced persons), without much hope of an end to the violence in the country.

The methodology used for identifying the victims follows a strict counting requiring the full name of the deceased, the date and location of death. According to the UN human rights office, this statistical model is fundamental in order to have the fullest possible picture and thus to reach  accountability for the killings. Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, adds the following: “We must always make victims’ stories visible both individually and collectively because the injustice and horror of each of those deaths should compel us to action”. Indeed, she urges us all to listen to the voices of Syrian survivors and victims and to the stories of those who have now fallen silent forever.                  




Author: Laura De Pascale; Editor: Catherine Meunier


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