18 Feb 16 09 Dec 16

Syria: Documenting war‐wounded and war‐dead

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has released a report on the 17th of February on the war-related deaths and injuries recorded in the medical facilities it supports in Syria.

As the conflict in Syria approaches its 6th year, the humanitarian and medical toll of the violence remains appalling. Millions of people have been internally displaced, or have sought refuge abroad.

This report aims to present a documented analysis of the medical and humanitarian consequences of the intensification of the military campaign in 2015, based on medical reports and data from 70 clinics and hospitals supported by Médecins Sans Frontières in Syria.


The report details how:

  • Between 30 and 40 percent of the victims are women and children. This shows that violence on civilian areas is happening on a massive scale. This is only a fraction of what is happening in Syria: wounded and deaths not reaching health structures are not included in this report.
  • 4 of 5 UNSC permanent member states are bombing in Syria and are NOT upholding the responsibilities they signed up to in multiple UNSC resolutions in terms of protection of civilians.
  • On average an MSF-supported health structure was bombed or shelled every single week in 2015. In total 63 MSF-supported health structures were hit in 94 separate incidents.

Intensification of War

The year 2015 saw an increased number of countries engaging their military and entering the war.

Russia intervened in September on the invitation of the Syrian government, with significant use of its airforce, while France and the UK extended their air campaigns under the US led coalition from Iraq to Syria in September and December.

MSF's calls

  • On all military forces participating in the conflict in Syria to respect International Humanitarian Law
  • For attacks on civilian targets and infrastructure to cease, so as to avoid further civilian casualties
  • Specifically calls for the protection and respect of the medical mission, and for all attacks on medical facilities, staff and emergency response teams to cease.
  • For full humanitarian access to all besieged areas and unhindered movement for medical evacuations, medical supplies and medical staff.
  • Specifically appeals to the four permanent members of the UN Security Council currently participating in the conflict to respect their own resolutions and assure that their own military, as well as their military allies, start to implement the resolutions for which they unanimously voted.

read more about msf's work in syria