Anti-Assad monitoring group says Syrian death toll passes 130,000

BEIRUT Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:36pm IST

Related Topics

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The death toll in Syria's civil war has risen to at least 130,433, more than a third of them civilians on both sides of the conflict, but the real figure is probably much higher, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Tuesday.

The conflict in Syria began in March 2011 as peaceful protests against four decades of rule by President Bashar al-Assad's family, but turned into an armed insurgency whose sectarian dimensions have reverberated across the Middle East.

The anti-Assad Observatory, based in Britain but with a network of sources across Syria, put the number of women and children killed in the conflict so far at 11,709.

It said the death toll among rebels fighting the Assad government was at least 29,083.

Deaths among the Syrian armed forces and fighters supporting Assad were at least 52,290, including 262 fighters from the Lebanese Shi'ite group Hezbollah and 286 from other non-Syrian Shi'ite groups.

Both Sunni and Shi'ite militants from the region have joined the fight on opposite sides.

Many Sunni Muslim nations support the rebels, who are led by Syria's Sunni majority. Shi'ite Muslim states back Assad, who is from the minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shi'ism.

The Observatory said at least 17,000 people are being held in government prisons while more than 6,000 government supporters are in the custody of Islamist rebels.

It said the actual number of people killed and imprisoned is likely to be at least 50,000 higher, but said it could not verify those cases because the identities of the victims were hidden or missing.

The United Nations does not give regular casualty counts for Syria and has said for months that more than 100,000 have been killed. (Reporting by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Louise Ireland)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Baghdad Bombing

Baghdad Bombing

Baghdad restaurant bombs kill 21  Full Article 

Ebola Outbreak

Ebola Outbreak

India to step up travel surveillance to stop any Ebola outbreak  Full Article 

Hong Kong Unrest

Hong Kong Unrest

Hong Kong students put their case to govt, but no breakthrough  Full Article 

Iran Nuclear Talks

Iran Nuclear Talks

Exclusive: Iran offers "compromises" in nuclear talks, West unmoved  Full Article 

American Freed

American Freed

White House confirms U.S. citizen released from North Korea  Full Article 

Npeal Disaster

Npeal Disaster

Death toll in Nepal's worst trekking disaster reaches 43  Full Article 

Canadian Soldier Dies

Canadian Soldier Dies

Canadian soldier dies after being run down by suspected militant  Full Article 

Rebuilding Gaza Strip

Rebuilding Gaza Strip

Palestinians downbeat on promised rebuilding of ruined Gaza Strip  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage