Yemen Data Project: Collating data on political violence and Saudi coalition air raids.
View this email in your browser

Yemen Data Project Air Raids Summary for January 2019 

Air raids continue decline for first month of 2019

Bombings in Hajja rise 65% amid reduced air raids countrywide

The Yemen Data Project recorded a near 15% fall in Saudi/UAE-led coalition air raids* in Yemen in January 2019, adding to the 21% fall seen in December. With 155 air raids recorded, January saw one of the lowest number of air raids in a single month since the 2016 ceasefire - brought about by peace talks in Kuwait that ran between April and August 2016. Since May and June 2016 only in October 2018 were the number of air raids (146) lower.
Bombings rise in eight governorates

Despite the countrywide fall eight governorates saw an increase in bombings in January most notably in Hajja where there was a 65% rise in air raids and the highest in the governorate since May 2018. Similarly, the nine air raids recorded in Amanat al-Asimah (Sana'a city) in January was the highest number in the capital since May 2018. Taiz saw air raids for the first time in three months. Bombings were also carried out in the southern governorates of Shabwa and Abyan for the first time in over a year. Air raids were recorded in Raymah (3) in January for only the sixth month since the aerial war began in March 2015. The five bombings recorded in Amran in January were more than the previous four months combined in the governorate. Dhamar (4) saw the highest number of air raids since January 2018.
Air raids during Al-Hudaydah ceasefire

Although a ceasefire has been in place in Al-Hudaydah since mid-December, 6 air raids were recorded in the governorate in January, bringing a total of 8 recorded air raids in Al-Hudaydah since the ceasefire came into force at midnight on 18 December.

This is a significant reduction in the pre-ceasefire high of 103 air raids in Al-Hudaydah in November 2018.

January 2019

 155 air raids

14% on December 2018
62% below monthly average

29% targeted non-military sites 3% below average

Total air raids* 26 March 2015 to 31 January 2019: 19,278
Saudi/UAE-led coalition air raids fell in January to 155 from 181 in December.

The number of air raids in January was 62% below the monthly average of (410) air raids per month since the air campaign began in March 2015.

While the number of monthly bombings remains well below average for the near 4 year-long air campaign, the focus of the air war remains on Sa'ada and, since the start of the Al-Hudaydah ceasefire, on Hajja with 63% of air raids in January targeting these two governorates.

In January 29% of bombings hit civilian targets**, 20% hit military targets. In more than 50% of air raids in January the target could not be identified. Of the 76 raids where the target could be identified 59% targeted non-military sites and 41% military.

Air raids targeted 14 of Yemen's 22 governorates in January.

The highest number of  air raids recorded in a single month remains September 2015, at 920.
**A rise in non-military targeting may be an indication of increased fighting taking place in urban areas resulting in the possible change of use of buildings and/or escalated targeting of civilian sites. The dataset lists target category and subcategory for each incident, where information on the target is available. When listing permanent structures the target category refers to the original use of the target e.g. a school hit by an air raid is referred to as a school building with no further assessment made on its use at the time of the air raid, or any possible change of use over the course of the conflict.
Breakdown of districts targeted

Sa'ada has been the most heavily bombed governorate in Yemen since the Saudi/UAE-led air campaign began. Almost a quarter (23%) of all recorded air raids in Yemen since March 2015 targeted Sa'ada. In January 60 air raids - 39% - targeted the governorate, a fall from 64 in December. The north-western border district of Baqim was the most heavily hit in January with 20 air raids.
Breakdown of districts targeted

Following the introduction of a ceasefire in Al-Hudaydah on 18 December bombings in Hajja increased significantly, rising by 65% from 23 air raids in December to 38 in January. The border district of Harad was the most heavily targeted in the governorate with 19 air raids. A quarter of all coalition bombings in January hit the two districts of Baqim in Sa'ada and Harad in Hajja. 
Of the 76 air raids where the target** was identified in January 2019 
  • 27 targeted residential areas 
  • 4 targeted farms
  • 3 targeted civilian vehicles and buses
  • 3 targeted transport infrastructure
  • 3 targeted factories
  • 2 targeted communication sites
  • 1 targeted a market place
Sub-categories of Air Raid Targets

January 2019

Political Violence and Fatalities Data
How Houthi-planted Mines are Killing Civilians

Separate to our air raids data collection, as part of our work to enhance conflict monitoring and data sharing, YDP is collaborating with the Armed Conflict and Events Data Project on countrywide political violence data. This work is included in ACLED's latest data to the end of 2018.

 This extensive monitoring effort has allowed ACLED and YDP to provide the most comprehensive coverage of political violence across Yemen.

The latest report covers the Houthis use of landmines

At least 267 civilian fatalities were recorded in 140 reported incidents attributed to Houthi-planted mines and IEDs since 2016. Yet Saudi sources claim that up to 920 civilians may have been killed, along with thousands injured and maimed, since 2014.

Mine blasts have intensified since a coalition of Emirati-backed Yemeni forces started a military campaign in the western province of Hodeidah, which accounts for nearly 60% of total civilian deaths linked to mines planted by the Houthis in 2018. Mine incidents have gradually increased over the past year and culminated in December 2018 and January 2019, the deadliest months since ACLED started to record violent events in Yemen.

Between January and May last year, Houthi-planted mines reportedly killed an average of three civilians each month in Hodeidah. After the Emirati-backed Yemeni forces launched the offensive, the figure jumped to twelve between June and December 2018, marking a significant 279% increase.

Read the full report here.

Find out more about the methodology and coding decisions used in the ACLED data collection here.

Iona Craig (UK) +447446598852

The Yemen Data Project is an independent, not-for-profit data collection project. For more on who we are and on the methodology of our data collection please visit Yemen Data Project:

The full dataset collated by the Yemen Data Project of air raids carried out from 26th March 2015 to 25th March 2018 is available to download here. An overview of that data is available here.

The Yemen Data Project's dataset is licenced under creative commons. You are therefore free to reuse the data but we ask that you please cite the Yemen Data Project and link back to the dataset. 

*Air raid refers to a single incident or air raid, which in turn may comprise multiple airstrikes. It is not possible to generate an average number of airstrikes per air raid as these vary greatly, from a couple of airstrikes up to several dozen per air raid. For example, in the case of a so-called 'double-tap' strike where first responders appear to be targeted by at least one follow up bombing this would be counted as one incident or, as calculated here, one air  raid.

Copyright © 2017 The Yemen Data Project. All rights reserved.

For further information on the Yemen Data Project please visit or contact the project's volunteer spokesperson, Iona Craig: 
Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can unsubscribe from this list

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp