US-led coalition: 1,257 civilians killed in airstrikes against ISIS

BEIRUT — The U.S.-led coalition says more than 1,250 civilians were killed in 34,038 airstrikes against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria during a more than four-year period.

The coalition in a statement Thursday released the civilian death toll from the period between when the aerial campaign began in August 2014 until February this year.

Two U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft fly over northern Iraq. The U.S.-led coalition has ramped up its airstrikes against the Islamic State in recent weeks. (Senior Airman Matthew Bruch/Air Force)
Airstrikes against ISIS in Syria up in recent weeks

The greatest increase in airstrikes came after the Trump administration ordered a surprise withdrawal from Syria Dec. 19, which caught the Pentagon and allies off-guard and led to the resignation of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

It comes just days after the U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces announced it defeated ISIS in the last area it held in Syria in the village of Baghouz near the Iraqi border.

The coalition's statement says: "We continue to employ thorough and deliberate targeting and strike processes to minimize the impact of our operations on civilian populations and infrastructure."

It said the death toll was based on information available to the coalition.

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