Decode how US-led bombing destroyed Raqqa, Syria

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Each building is analysed by multiple decoders


Raqqa, the most destroyed city in modern times

The US-led Coalition’s four-month military operation to oust the Islamic State (IS) armed group from the city of Raqqa (Syria) killed and injured thousands of civilians and destroyed almost 80% of the city.

In the aftermath of the battle, Amnesty International’s researchers carried out extensive field investigations in Raqqa. They interviewed survivors and witnesses, examined material evidence and corroborated it with expert military and geospatial analysis. After initial denials, the Coalition admitted responsibility for almost all the cases we documented to date.

But we need to investigate many more cases, to pressure the Coalition to take responsibility for the deaths and destruction caused by its bombardments and to empower victims’ families to seek justice.

Help us do this by decoding the thousands of strikes that left Raqqa in ruins. You can do this using your phone/computer to look through satellite images of Raqqa to pinpoint when buildings were destroyed.


Establish the timeframe of destruction

UN data shows more than 10,000 buildings in Raqqa were destroyed or damaged over the course of the battle. This scale of civilian devastation is simply too large for us to analyse alone.

With the help of thousands of ‘Strike Trackers’, we can establish precisely when and where strikes destroyed buildings and map out the apocalyptic destruction in Raqqa.

Anyone with a mobile phone or computer can contribute. Your task is to track a building across a timeline of satellite images, looking for change and pinpointing the dates before and after the building’s destruction. To get you ready, we prepared an interactive tutorial where you can practice and get feedback. There is also a ‘Help’ section where you can see more examples and a forum where you can ask our moderators and researchers for help.


Amnesty International, in partnership with Airwars, is conducting the most comprehensive assessment of civilian deaths resulting from US-led bombings in Raqqa.

The data you produce will help our investigation by linking visible damage to the city’s buildings with coalition strikes and casualty reports gathered by our researchers and partners. This evidence will put pressure on the US-led Coalition to properly investigate all civilian deaths, paving the way for justice and reparation.


Strike Tracker is an Amnesty Decoders project. Amnesty Decoders is a global network of digital volunteers for human rights research. Already there are more than 50,000 volunteers from more than 150 countries.

Strike Tracker is part of an investigation into civilian deaths resulting from US-led airstrikes in Raqqa, Syria conducted by Amnesty International in partnership with Airwars.

Strike Tracker uses data about damage in Raqqa, Syria from the UNITAR Operational Satellite Applications Program - UNOSAT.

This project was developed in collaboration with Focal Labs. Powered by Hive, a modular, flexible, open-source platform developed by the New York Times and Discourse, an open-source discussion platform.

Get involved

Be part of an international community of digital volunteers and help Amnesty International map out devastating destruction in Raqqa, Syria.