List of war crimes

This article lists and summarizes the war crimes committed since the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907 and the crimes against humanity and crimes against peace that have been committed since these crimes were first defined in the Rome Statute.[lower-alpha 1]

Since many war crimes are not ultimately prosecuted (due to lack of political will, lack of effective procedures, or other practical and political reasons[1]), historians and lawyers will often make a serious case that war crimes occurred, even if there was no formal investigations or prosecution of the alleged crimes or an investigation cleared the alleged perpetrators.

War crimes under international law were firmly established by international trials such as the Nuremberg Trials and the Tokyo Trials, in which Austrian, German and Japanese leaders were prosecuted for war crimes committed during World War II.

1914–1918: World War I

World War I was the first major international conflict to take place following the codification of war crimes at the Hague Convention of 1907, including derived war crimes, such as the use of poisons as weapons, as well as crimes against humanity, and derivative crimes against humanity, such as torture, and genocide. Before, the Second Boer War took place after the Hague Convention of 1899. The Second Boer War (1899 until 1902) is known for the first concentration camps (1900 until 1902) for civilians in the 20th century.

Armed conflict Perpetrator
World War I German Empire (Imperial Germany)
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Rape of Belgium War crimes No prosecutions In defiance of the 1907 Hague Convention on Land Warfare, the German occupiers engaged in mass atrocities against the civilian population of Belgium and looting and destruction of civilian property, in order to flush out the Belgian guerrilla fighters, or francs-tireurs, in the first two months of the war, after the German invasion of Belgium in August 1914.[2] In addition, since Belgium was officially neutral after hostilities in Europe broke out and Germany invaded the country without explicit warning, this act was in breach of the treaty of 1839 and the 1907 Hague Convention on Opening of Hostilities.[3]
World War IAll major belligerents
Employment of poison gas Use of poisons as weapons No prosecutions Poison gas was introduced by Imperial Germany, and was subsequently used by all major belligerents in the war, in violation of the 1899 Hague Declaration Concerning Asphyxiating Gases and the 1907 Hague Convention on Land Warfare[4][5]
World War IOttoman Empire
Armenian Genocide[6][7][8][9][10][11] War crimes, crimes against humanity, crime of genocide (Extermination of Armenians in Western Armenia) The Turkish Courts-Martial of 1919–20 as well as the incomplete Malta Tribunals were trials of certain of the alleged perpetrators. The Young Turk regime ordered the wholesale extermination of Armenians living within Western Armenia. This was carried out by certain elements of their military forces, who either massacred Armenians outright, or deported them to Syria and then massacred them. Over 1.5 million Armenians perished.

The Republic of Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, does not accept the word genocide as an accurate description of the events surrounding this matter.[12]

World War IUnited Kingdom
Baralong Incidents War crimes (murder of shipwreck survivors) No prosecutions On 19 August 1915, a German submarine, U-27, while preparing to sink the British freighter Nicosian, which was loaded with war supplies, after the crew had board the lifeboats, was sunk by the British Q-ship HMS Baralong. Afterwards, Lieutenant Godfrey Herbert ordered his Baralong crew to kill the survivors of the German submarine while still at sea, including those who were summarily executed after boarding the Nicosian. The massacre was reported to a newspaper by American citizens who were also on board the Nicosian.[13] Another attack occurred on 24 September a month later when Baralong destroyed U-41, which was in the process of sinking the cargo ship Urbino. According to U41's commander Karl Goetz, the British vessel was flying the American flag even after opening fire on the submarine, and the lifeboat carrying the German survivors was rammed and sunk by the British Q-ship.[14]
World War IOttoman Empire
Assyrian Genocide War Crimes, Crimes against humanity, genocide, ethnic cleansing Turkish Courts-Martial of 1919-20 Mass killing of Assyrian civilians by the Ottoman Empire's forces resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands. Turkey does not call the event genocide.
Greek Genocide War Crimes, Crimes against humanity, genocide, ethnic cleansing Turkish Courts-Martial of 1919-20 Violent Ethnic Cleansing campaign against Greeks in Anatolia resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands. Turkey does not call the event genocide.
World War IRussian Empire
Russian Democide against Turks and Kurds War Crimes, Crimes against humanity No prosecutions Analyst of political killings Rudolph Rummel compiled sources indicting the forces loyal to the Russian empire for killing hundreds of thousands of Turkish and Kurdish civilians. Rummel himself estimated 150,000 Kurds were massacred from consolidating estimates of 128,000 and 600,000 casualties and takes the estimated half million Turks killed at face value due to the source being Arnold Toynbee.[15]

1935–1937: Second Italo-Abyssinian War

1936–1939: Spanish Civil War

At least 50,000 people were executed during the Spanish Civil War.[17][18] In his updated history of the Spanish Civil War, Antony Beevor writes, "Franco's ensuing 'white terror' claimed 200,000 lives. The 'red terror' had already killed 38,000."[19] Julius Ruiz concludes that "although the figures remain disputed, a minimum of 37,843 executions were carried out in the Republican zone with a maximum of 150,000 executions (including 50,000 after the war) in Nationalist Spain."[20] César Vidal puts the number of Republican victims at 110,965.[21] In 2008 a Spanish judge, Socialist Baltasar Garzon, opened an investigation into the executions and disappearances of 114,266 people between 17 July 1936 and December 1951. Among the executions investigated was that of the poet and dramatist Federico García Lorca.[22][23]

1937–1945: Second Sino-Japanese War

This section includes war crimes up to and through December 5, 1941 when the Second Sino-Japanese War became the Asian Theater of World War II, due to the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. For war crimes after this date see the section called World War II: Japan perpetrated crimes.

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Second Sino-Japanese War Japan
Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
Attack on China in 1937 Crimes against peace (Waging unprovoked war against China (count 27 at the Tokyo Trials[24] in contravention of the Nine-Power Treaty, Tanggu Truce, and Kellogg–Briand Pact)) Sadao Araki, Kenji Doihara, Kingoro Hashimoto, Shunroku Hata, Hiranuma Kiichirō, Kōki Hirota, Naoki Hoshino, Seishirō Itagaki, Okinori Kaya, Kōichi Kido, Heitarō Kimura, Kuniaki Koiso, Jirō Minami, Akira Mutō, Takazumi Oka, Hiroshi Ōshima, Kenryo Sato, Mamoru Shigemitsu, Shigetarō Shimada, Teiichi Suzuki, Toshio Shiratori, Shigenori Tōgō, Hideki Tōjō, Yoshijirō Umezu A minor clash between the Chinese National Revolutionary Army and the Imperial Japanese Army at the Marco Polo Bridge Incident on 6–9 July 1937 escalated into a full-scale war after Japan used the incident as a pretext to launch an all-out invasion of China to conquer as much territory as possible.
Nanking Massacre,[24] China, 1937–38 Crimes against humanity; War crimes General Asaka Yasuhiko, commander, Japanese Shanghai Expeditionary Force, Imperial Japanese Army. General Iwane Matsui, Commanding general of Japanese forces in China, Imperial Japanese Army. Lieutenant General Hisao Tani, commanding officer of the Japanese 10th Army, Imperial Japanese Army. Chief of staff of the Army Kotohito Kan'in, Minister of War Hajime Sugiyama. It is debated how culpable Emperor Hirohito was. After the Battle of Nanking, on 13 December 1937, the Japanese entered and occupied the city virtually resistance free. From then for a period of about 6 weeks after, until early February 1938, widespread war crimes were committed including mass rape, looting, arson, the killing of civilians and prisoners of war. Most estimates put deaths at between 150,000 and 300,000 dead.
Battle of Wuhan, China, 1938 Use of chemical weapons on the battlefield No prosecutions During the Battle of Wuhan, the IJA launched 9,667 red gas artillery shells and 32,162 red gas grenades against Chinese forces over 375 times in total from August to October 1938.[25] The use of poison gas by the IJA was in violation of the 1899 Hague Declaration (IV, 2) which prohibited the launching of projectiles containing asphyxiating or poisonous gas[26] and Article 23 (a) of the 1907 Hague Convention IV – The Laws and Customs of War on Land which prohibited the use of "poison or poisoned weapons" in warfare.[27] Japan was a signatory to these both agreements.[28][29]
Hankow massacre, China, 1938 War crimes (Mass execution of POWs) General Shunroku Hata, commander, China Expeditionary Army, Imperial Japanese Army. War crimes were committed including the killing of civilians and prisoners of war.[30]

1939–1945: World War II

Axis powers

The Axis Powers (particularly Germany and Japan) were some of the most systematic perpetrators of war crimes in modern history. Contributing factors included Nazi race theory, a desire for "living space" that justified the eradication of native populations, and militaristic indoctrination that encouraged the terrorization of conquered peoples and prisoners of war. The Holocaust, the German attack on the Soviet Union and occupation of much of Europe, the Japanese occupation of Manchuria and the Philippines and attack on China all contributed to well over half of the civilian deaths in World War II and the conflicts that led up to the war. Even before post-war revelations of atrocities, both militaries were notorious for their brutal treatment of captured combatants.

Crimes perpetrated by Germany

According to the Nuremberg Trials, there were four major war crimes that were alleged against German military (and Waffen-SS and NSDAP) men and officers, each with individual events that made up the major charges.

1. Participation in a common plan of conspiracy for the accomplishment of crimes against peace

2. Planning, initiating and waging wars of aggression and other crimes against peace

3. War Crimes Atrocities against enemy combatants or conventional crimes committed by military units (see War crimes of the Wehrmacht), and include:

4. Crimes against Humanity Crimes committed well away from the lines of battle and unconnected in any way to military activity, distinct from war crimes

Other crimes against humanity included:

At least 10 million, and perhaps over 20 million perished directly and indirectly due to the commission of crimes against humanity and war crimes by the Nazi regime, of which the Holocaust lives on in particular infamy, for its particularly cruel nature and scope, and the industrialized nature of the genocide of Jewish citizens of states invaded or controlled by the Nazi regime. At least 5.9 million Jews were murdered by the Nazis, or 66 to 78% of Europe's Jewish population, although a complete count may never be known. Though much of Continental Europe suffered under the Nazi occupation, Poland, in particular, was the state most devastated by these crimes, with 90% of its Jews as well as many ethnic Poles slaughtered by the Nazis. After the war, from 1945 to 1949, the Nazi regime was put on trial in two tribunals in Nuremberg, Germany by the victorious Allied powers. The first tribunal indicted 24 major Nazi war criminals, and resulted in 19 convictions (of which 12 led to death sentences) and 3 acquittals, 2 of the accused died before a verdict was rendered, at least one of which by killing himself with cyanide.[37] The second tribunal indicted 185 members of the military, economic, and political leadership of Nazi Germany, of which 142 were convicted and 35 were acquitted. In subsequent decades, approximately 20 additional war criminals who escaped capture in the immediate aftermath of World War II were tried in West Germany and Israel. In Germany and many other European nations, the Nazi Party and denial of the Holocaust is outlawed.

Crimes perpetrated by Hungary

IncidentType of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Novi Sad massacre[38][39] Crimes against humanity After the war, most of the perpetrators were convicted by the People's Tribunal. The leaders of the massacre, Ferenc Feketehalmy-Czeydner, József Grassy and Márton Zöldy were sentenced to death and later extradited to Yugoslavia, together with Ferenc Szombathelyi, Lajos Gaál, Miklós Nagy, Ferenc Bajor, Ernő Bajsay-Bauer and Pál Perepatics. After a trial at Novi Sad, all of them were sentenced to death and executed. 4,211 civilians (2,842 Serbs, 1,250 Jews, 64 Roma, 31 Rusyns, 13 Russians and 11 ethnic Hungarians) rounded up and killed by Hungarian troops in reprisal for resistance activities.
Kamianets-Podilskyi massacre[40][41] Crimes against humanity; Crime of Genocide After the war, the perpetrator of the massacre, Friedrich Jeckeln was sentenced to death and executed in the Soviet Union. 14000-16000 Jews were deported by Hungarian troops to Kamianets-Podilskyi to be executed by SS troops. Part of the first large-scale mass murder in pursuit of the "Final Solution".
Sarmasu massacre[42][43] Crimes against humanity The People's Tribunal at Cluj sentenced to death 7 Hungarian officer in absentia, two local Hungarian were sentenced to imprisonment. Torture and killing of 126 Jews by Hungarian troops in the village of Sarmasu.
Treznea massacre[44] Crimes against humanity The People's Tribunal at Cluj sentenced to death Ferenc Bay in absentia, 3 local Hungarian were sentenced to imprisonment, 2 person were acquitted. 93 to 236 Romanian and Jewish civilians (depending on sources) executed as reprisal for alleged attacks from locals on the Hungarian troops.
Ip massacre[44] Crimes against humanity A Hungarian officer was sentenced to death by the People's Tribunal at Cluj in absentia, 13 local Hungarians were sentenced to imprisonment, 2 person were acquitted. 150 Romanian civilians executed by Hungarian rogue troops and paramilitary formations as reprisal for the death of two Hungarian soldiers in an explosion.
Hegyeshalom death march[45][46] Crimes against humanity; Crime of genocide After the war most of the responsibles were sentenced by the Hungarian people's tribunals, including the whole Szálasi-government About 10,000 Budapest Jews died as a result of exhaustion and executions while marching toward Hegyeshalom at the Austrian border.

Crimes perpetrated by Italy

Main article: Italian war crimes

Crimes perpetrated by the (first) Slovak Republic (1939–1945)

Crimes perpetrated by Japan

Main article: Japanese war crimes

This section includes war crimes from 7 December 1941 when the United States was attacked by Japan so entering World War II. For war crimes before this date which took place during the Second Sino-Japanese War please see the section above called 1937–1945: Second Sino-Japanese War.

Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
World War II Crimes against peace (Overall waging and/or conspiracy to wage a war of aggression for territorial aggrandizement, as established by the Tokyo Trials) General Doihara Kenji, Baron Hirota Koki, General Seishirō Itagaki, General Kimura Heitaro, General Matsui Iwane, General Muto Akira, General Hideki Tōjō, General Araki Sadao, Colonel Hashimoto Kingoro, Field Marshal Hata Shunroku, Baron Hiranuma Kiichiro, Hoshino Naoki, Kaya Okinori, Marquis Kido Kōichi, General Koiso Kuniaki, General Minami Jiro, Admiral Oka Takasumi, General Oshima Hiroshi, General Sato Kenryo, Admiral Shimada Shigetaro, Shiratori Toshio, General Suzuki Teiichi, General Yoshijirō Umezu, Togo Shigenori, Shigemitsu Mamoru The persons responsible were tried by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East.
Attack on the United States in 1941[24] Crimes against peace (Waging aggressive war against the United States (count 29 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Kenji Doihara, Shunroku Hata, Hiranuma Kiichirō, Naoki Hoshino, Seishirō Itagaki, Okinori Kaya, Kōichi Kido, Heitarō Kimura, Kuniaki Koiso, Akira Mutō, Takasumi Oka, Kenryo Sato, Mamoru Shigemitsu, Shigetarō Shimada, Teiichi Suzuki, Shigenori Tōgō, Hideki Tōjō, Yoshijirō Umezu[24] Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, Commander-in-Chief of the Japanese Combined Fleet was ordered by his militarist superiors to start the war with a bloody sneak attack on a U.S. Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941. The attack was in violation of the 1928 Kellogg-Briand Pact, which prohibited war of aggression, and the 1907 Hague Convention (III), which prohibited the initiation of hostilities without explicit warning, since the U.S. was officially neutral and was attacked without a declaration of war or an ultimatum at that time.[49] In addition, Japan violated the Four-Power Treaty by attacking and invading the U.S. territories of Wake Island, Guam, and the Philippines which began simultaneously with the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Attack on the British Commonwealth in 1941[24] Crimes against peace (Waging aggressive war against the British Commonwealth (count 31 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Kenji Doihara, Shunroku Hata, Hiranuma Kiichirō, Naoki Hoshino, Seishirō Itagaki, Okinori Kaya, Kōichi Kido, Heitarō Kimura, Kuniaki Koiso, Akira Mutō, Takasumi Oka, Kenryo Sato, Mamoru Shigemitsu, Shigetarō Shimada, Teiichi Suzuki, Shigenori Tōgō, Hideki Tōjō, Yoshijirō Umezu[24] Simultaneously with the bombing of Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941 (Honolulu time), Japan invaded the British colonies of Malaya and bombed Singapore and Hong Kong, without a declaration of war or an ultimatum, which was in violation of the 1907 Hague Convention (III) and the 1928 Kellogg-Briand Pact since Britain was officially neutral with Japan at the time.[50][51]
Crimes against peace (Waging aggressive war against the Netherlands (count 32 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Kenji Doihara, Shunroku Hata, Hiranuma Kiichirō, Naoki Hoshino, Seishirō Itagaki, Okinori Kaya, Kōichi Kido, Heitarō Kimura, Kuniaki Koiso, Akira Mutō, Takasumi Oka, Kenryo Sato, Mamoru Shigemitsu, Shigetarō Shimada, Teiichi Suzuki, Shigenori Tōgō, Hideki Tōjō, Yoshijirō Umezu[24]
Crimes against peace (Waging aggressive war against France in Indochina (count 33 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Mamoru Shigemitsu, Hideki Tōjō[24]
Crimes against peace (Waging aggressive war against the USSR (counts 35 and 36 or both at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Kenji Doihara, Hiranuma Kiichirō, Seishirō Itagaki[24]
Nanjing Massacre; Narcotics Trafficking; Bacteriological Warfare[24] War crimes ("ordered, authorized, and permitted" inhumane treatment of Prisoners of War (POWs) and others (count 54 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Kenji Doihara, Seishirō Itagaki, Heitarō Kimura, Akira Mutō, Hideki Tōjō[24]
Nanjing Massacre; Narcotics Trafficking; Bacteriological Warfare[24] War crimes, Crimes against humanity, Crime of torture ("deliberately and recklessly disregarded their duty" to take adequate steps to prevent atrocities (count 55 at the Tokyo Trials)[24] Shunroku Hata, Kōki Hirota, Heitarō Kimura, Kuniaki Koiso, Iwane Matsui, Akira Mutō, Mamoru Shigemitsu[24]
"Black Christmas", Hong Kong, December 25, 1941,[52] Crimes against humanity (Murder of civilians; mass rape, looting) no specific prosecutions, although the conviction and execution of Takashi Sakai included some activities in Hong Kong during the time frame On the day of the British surrender of Hong Kong to the Japanese. The Japanese committed atrocities on many local Chinese and thousands of Chinese females may have been raped. During the three and half years of occupation by the Japanese. An estimated 10,000 Hong Kong civilians were executed, while many others were tortured, raped, or mutilated.[53]
Banka Island Massacre, Dutch East Indies, 1942 War crimes no prosecutions The merchant ship Vyner Brooke was sunk by Japanese aircraft. The survivors who made it to Banka Island were all shot or bayonetted, including 22 nurses ordered into the sea and machine-gunned. One nurse Vivian Bullwinkel survived the massacre and later testified at a war crimes trial in Tokyo in 1947[54]
Bataan Death March, Philippines, 1942 Crime of torture, war crimes (Torture and murder of POWs) General Masaharu Homma was convicted by an Allied commission of war crimes, including the atrocities of the death march out of Bataan, and the atrocities at Camp O'Donnell and Cabanatuan that followed. He was executed on April 3, 1946 outside Manila. Approximately 75,000 Filipino and US soldiers, commanded by Major General Edward P. King, Jr. formally surrendered to the Japanese, under General Masaharu Homma, on April 9, 1942, which forced Japan to accept emaciated captives outnumbering them. Captives were forced to march, beginning the next day, about 100 kilometers north to Nueva Ecija to Camp O'Donnell, a prison camp. Prisoners of war were beaten randomly and denied food and water for several days. Those who fell behind were executed through various means: shot, beheaded or bayoneted. Deaths estimated at 650-1,500 U.S. and 2,000 to over 5,000 Filipino-,[55][56]
Enemy Airmen's Act War crimes (Murder of POWs) General Shunroku Hata Promulgated on August 13, 1942 to try and execute captured Allied airmen taking part in bombing operations against targets in Japanese-held territory. The Act contributed to the murder of hundreds of Allied airmen throughout the Pacific War.
Operation Sankō (Three Alls Policy) Crimes against humanity General Yasuji Okamura Authorized in December 1941 to implement a scorched earth policy in North China by Imperial General Headquarters. According to historian Mitsuyoshi Himeta, "more than 2.7 million" civilians were killed in this operation that began in May 1942.[57]
Parit Sulong massacre, Malaysia, 1942 War crimes (Murder of POWs) Lieutenant General Takuma Nishimura, was convicted for this crime by an Australian Military Court and hanged on June 11, 1951.[58] Recently captured Australian and Indian POWs, who had been too badly wounded to escape through the jungle, were murdered by Japanese soldiers. Accounts differ on how they were killed. Two wounded Australians managed to escape the massacre and provide eyewitness accounts of the Japanese treatment of wounded prisoners of war, as did locals who witnessed the massacre. Official records indicate that 150 wounded men were killed.
Laha massacre, 1942 War crimes (Murder of POWs) In 1946, the Laha massacre and other incidents which followed the fall of Ambon became the subject of the largest ever war crimes trial, when 93 Japanese personnel were tried by an Australian tribunal, at Ambon. Among other convictions, four men were executed as a result. Commander Kunito Hatakeyama, who was in direct command of the four massacres, was hanged; Rear Admiral Koichiro Hatakeyama, who was found to have ordered the killings, died before he could be tried.[59] After the battle Battle of Ambon, more than 300 Australian and Dutch prisoners of war were chosen at random and summarily executed, at or near Laha airfield in four separate massacres. "The Laha massacre was the largest of the atrocities committed against captured Allied troops in 1942.".[60]
Palawan Massacre, 1944 War crimes (Murder of POWs) In 1948, in Lt. Gen. Seiichi Terada was accused of failing to take command of the soldiers in the Puerto Princesa camp. Master Sgt. Toru Ogawa and Superior Private Tomisaburo Sawa were the only few soldiers who were charged for the actual involvement since most of the soldiers garrisoned in the camp had either died or went missing in the days following the victory of the Philippines campaign. In 1958, all charges were dropped and sentences were reduced. Following the US invasion of Luzon in 1944, the Japanese high command ordered that all POWs remaining in the island are to be exterminated at all cost. As a result, on December 14, 1944, units from the Japanese Fourteenth Area Army stationed in the Puerto Princesa POW camp in Palawan rounded up 150 remaining POWs still garrisoned in the camp, herded them into air raid shelters, before dousing the shelters with gasoline and setting it on fire. Of the handful of POWs that were able to escape the flames were hunted before being gunned down, bayonetted, or burned alive. Only 11 POWs survived the ordeal and were able to escape to allied lines to report the incident.[61]
Alexandra Hospital massacre, Battle of Singapore, 1942 War crimes no prosecutions At about 1pm on February 14, Japanese soldiers approached Alexandra Barracks Hospital. Although no resistance was offered, some of them shot or bayoneted staff members and patients. The remaining staff and patients were murdered over the next two days, 200 in all.[62]
Sook Ching Massacre, 1942 Crimes against humanity (mass murder of civilians) In 1947, the British Colonial authorities in Singapore held a war crimes trial to bring the perpetrators to justice. Seven officers, were charged with carrying out the massacre. While Lieutenant General Saburo Kawamura, Lieutenant Colonel Masayuki Oishi received the death penalty, the other five received life sentences The massacre (estimated at 25,000–50,000)[63] was a systematic extermination of perceived hostile elements among the Chinese in Singapore by the Japanese military administration during the Japanese Occupation of Singapore, after the British colony surrendered in the Battle of Singapore on 15 February 1942.
Changjiao massacre, China, 1943 Crimes against humanity, War crimes (Mass murder of civilian population & POWs, rape, looting) General Shunroku Hata, commander, China Expeditionary Army, Imperial Japanese Army. War crimes were committed including mass rape, looting, arson, the killing of civilians and prisoners of war.[64][65][66]
Manila Massacre Crimes against humanity (mass murder of civilians) Tomoyuki Yamashita commander, Akira Mutō chief of staff As commander of the 14th Area Army of Japan in the Philippines, Gen. Yamashita failed to stop his troops from killing over 100,000 Filipino citizens of Manila[67] while fighting with both native resistance forces and elements of the Sixth U.S. Army during the capture of the city in February 1945. Yamashita pleaded inability to act and lack of knowledge of the massacre, due to his commanding other operations in the area. The defense failed, establishing the Yamashita Standard, which holds that a commander who makes no meaningful effort to uncover and stop atrocities is as culpable as if he had ordered them. His chief of staff Akira Mutō was condemned by the Tokyo tribunal.
Wake Island Massacre War crimes 98 US Civilians killed on Wake Island October 7, 1943 by order of Rear Admiral Shigematsu Sakaibara Shigematsu Sakaibara executed June 18, 1947; subordinate, Lieutenant-Commander Tachibana sentenced to death-later commuted to Life
Unit 100 War crimes; Use of poisons as weapons (biological warfare experiments on humans) no prosecutions
Unit 731 Crimes against humanity; War crimes; Crime of torture; Use of poisons as weapons (biological warfare testing, manufacturing, and use) 12 members of the Kantogun were found guilty for the manufacture and use of biological weapons. Including: General Yamada Otsuzo, former Commander-in-Chief of the Kwantung Army and Major General Kawashima Kiyoshi, former Chief of Unit 731. During this biological and chemical weapons' program over 10,000 were experimented on without anesthetic and as many as 200,000 died throughout China. The Soviet Union tried some members of Unit 731 at the Khabarovsk War Crime Trials. However, those who surrendered to the Americans were never brought to trial as General Douglas MacArthur, Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers, secretly granted immunity to the physicians of Unit 731 in exchange for providing the United States with their research on biological weapons.[68]
Unit 8604 War crimes; Use of poisons as weapons (biological warfare experiments on humans) no prosecutions
Unit 9420 War crimes; Use of poisons as weapons (biological warfare experiments on humans) no prosecutions
Unit Ei 1644 War crimes; Use of poisons as weapons; Crime of torture (Human vivisection & chemical and biological weapon testing on humans) no prosecutions Unit 1644 conducted tests to determine human susceptibility to a variety of harmful stimuli ranging from infectious diseases to poison gas. It was the largest germ experimentation center in China. Unit 1644 regularly carried out human vivisections as well as infecting humans with cholera, typhus, and bubonic plague.
Construction of Burma-Thai Railway, the "Death Railway" War crimes; Crimes against humanity (Crime of Slaving) no prosecutions The estimated total number of civilian labourers and POWs who died during construction is about 160,000.
Comfort women Crimes against humanity; (Crime of Slaving; mass rape) no prosecutions Up to around 200,000 women were forced to work in Japanese military brothels.[69]
Sandakan Death Marches Crimes against humanity (Crime of Slaving), War crimes (Murder of civilian slave laborers and POWs) Three Allied POWs survived to give evidence at war crimes trials in Tokyo and Rabaul. Hokijima was found guilty and hanged on April 6, 1946 Over 6,000 Indonesian civilian slave laborers and POWs died.
War Crimes in Manchukuo Crimes against humanity (Crime of Slaving) Kōa-in According to historian Zhifen Ju, more than 10 million Chinese civilians were mobilized by the Imperial Japanese Army for slave labor in Manchukuo under the supervision of the Kōa-in.[70]
Kaimingye germ weapon attack War crimes, Use of poisons as weapons (Use of biological weapons) no prosecutions These bubonic plague attacks killing hundreds were a joint Unit 731 and Unit Ei 1644 endeavor.
Alleged Changde Bacteriological Weapon Attack April and May, 1943 War crimes; Use of poisons as weapons (Use of chemical and biological weapons in massacre of civilians) Prosecutions at the Khabarovsk War Crimes Trials Chemical weapons supplied by Unit 516. Bubonic plague and poison gas were used against civilians in Chengde, followed by further massacres and burning of the city.[71] Witold Urbanowicz, a Polish pilot fighting in China, estimated that nearly 300,000 civilians alone died in the battle.

Crimes perpetrated by Romania

Incident type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Iași pogrom[72] Crimes against humanity; Crime of genocide 57 people were tried and sentenced in the People's Tribunals Iaşi trial[73] including General Emanoil Leoveanu, General Gheorghe Barozzi, General Stamatiu, former Iași Prefect Colonel Coculescu, former Iași Mayor Colonel Captaru, and Gavrilovici Constantin (former driver at the Iași bus depot). resulted in the murder of at least 13,266 Jews
Odessa massacre[74] Crimes against humanity; Crime of genocide 28 people were tried and sentenced in the People's Tribunals Odessa trial[73] including General Nicolae Macici The mass murder of Jewish and Romani population of Odessa and surrounding towns in Transnistria (now in Ukraine) during the autumn of 1941 and winter of 1942 while under Romanian control.Depending on the accepted terms of reference and scope, the Odessa massacre refers either to the events of October 22–24, 1941 in which some 25,000 to 34,000 Jews were shot or burned, or to the murder of well over 100,000 Ukrainian Jews in the town and the areas between the Dniester and Bug rivers, during the Romanian and German occupation. In the same days, Germans and Romanians killed about 15,000 Romani people.
Aita Seaca massacre[75] War crime Gavril Olteanu Retaliation by Romanian paramilitaries for the locals killing of 20 Romanian soldiers on September 4, 1944. Eleven ethnic Hungarian civilians executed on September 26, 1944.

Crimes perpetrated by the Chetniks

Chetnik ideology revolved around the notion of a Greater Serbia within the borders of Yugoslavia, to be created out of all territories in which Serbs were found, even if the numbers were small. A directive dated 20 December 1941, addressed to newly appointed commanders in Montenegro, Major Đorđije Lašić and Captain Pavle Đurišić, outlined, among other things, the cleansing of all non-Serb elements in order to create a Greater Serbia:[76]

  1. The struggle for the liberty of our whole nation under the scepter of His Majesty King Peter II;
  2. the creation of a Great Yugoslavia and within it of a Great Serbia which is to be ethnically pure and is to include Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Srijem, the Banat, and Bačka;
  3. the struggle for the inclusion into Yugoslavia of all still unliberated Slovene territories under the Italians and Germans (Trieste, Gorizia, Istria, and Carinthia) as well as Bulgaria, and northern Albania with Skadar;
  4. the cleansing of the state territory of all national minorities and a-national elements;
  5. the creation of contiguous frontiers between Serbia and Montenegro, as well as between Serbia and Slovenia by cleansing the Muslim population from Sandžak and the Muslim and Croat populations from Bosnia and Herzegovina.
    Directive of 20 December 1941[76]
Chetniks in Šumadija kill a Partisan through heart extraction

The Chetniks systemically massacred Muslims in villages that they captured.[77] In late autumn of 1941 the Italians handed over the towns of Višegrad, Goražde, Foča and the surrounding areas, in south-east Bosnia to the Chetniks to run as a puppet administration and NDH forces were compelled by the Italians to withdraw from there.[78] After the Chetniks gained control of Goražde on 29 November 1941, they began a massacre of Home Guard prisoners and NDH officials that became a systematic massacre of the local Muslim civilian population.[78] Several hundred Muslims were murdered and their bodies were left hanging in the town or thrown into the Drina river.[78] On 5 December 1941, the Chetniks received the town of Foča from the Italians and proceeded to massacre around five hundred Muslims.[78] Additional massacres against the Muslims in the area of Foča took place in August 1942.[79] In total, over two thousand people were killed in Foča.[79] In early January, the Chetniks entered Srebrenica and killed around a thousand Muslim civilians in the town and in nearby villages.[80] Around the same time the Chetniks made their way to Višegrad where deaths were reportedly in the thousands.[81] Massacres continued in the following months in the region.[81] In the village of Žepa alone about three hundred were killed in late 1941.[81] In early January, Chetniks massacred fifty-four Muslims in Čelebić and burned down the village.[81] On 3 March, the Chetniks burned forty-two Muslim villagers to death in Drakan.[80]

In early January 1943 and again in early February, Montenegrin Chetnik units were ordered to carry out "cleansing actions" against Muslims, first in the Bijelo Polje county in Sandžak and then in February in the Čajniče county and part of Foča county in southeastern Bosnia, and in part of the Pljevlja county in Sandžak.[82] Pavle Đurišić, the officer in charge of these operations, reported to Mihailović, Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command, that on 10 January 1943: "thirty-three Muslim villages had been burned down, and 400 Muslim fighters (members of the Muslim self-protection militia supported by the Italians) and about 1,000 women and children had been killed, as against 14 Chetnik dead and 26 wounded".[82] In another report sent by Đurišić dated 13 February 1943, he reported that: "Chetniks killed about 1,200 Muslim fighters and about 8,000 old people, women, and children; Chetnik losses in the action were 22 killed and 32 wounded".[82] He added that "during the operation the total destruction of the Muslim inhabitants was carried out regardless of sex and age".[83] The total number of deaths caused by the anti-Muslim operations between January and February 1943 is estimated at 10,000.[82] The casualty rate would have been higher had a great number of Muslims not already fled the area, most to Sarajevo, when the February action began.[82] According to a statement from the Chetnik Supreme Command from February 24, 1943, these were countermeasures taken against Muslim aggressive activities; however, all circumstances show that these massacres were committed in accordance with implementing the directive of December 20, 1941.[79]

Actions against the Croats were of a smaller scale but similar in action.[84] One of the worst Chetnik outbursts against the Croat population of Dalmatia took place in early October 1942 in the village of Gata near Split, in which an estimated one hundred people were killed and many homes were burnt in a reprisal taken against the people of Gata and nearby villages for the destruction of some roads in the area and carried out on the Italians account.[79] In that same October, formations under the command of Petar Baćović and Dobroslav Jevđević, who were participating in the Italian Operation Alfa in the area of Prozor, massacred over five hundred Croats and Muslims and burnt numerous villages.[79] Baćović noted that "Our Chetniks killed all men 15 years of age or older. ... Seventeen villages were burned to the ground."[85] Mario Roatta, commander of the Italian Second Army, objected to these "massive slaughters" of noncombatant civilians and threatened to halt Italian aid to the Chetniks if they did not end.[85]

Crimes perpetrated by the Ustashas

Numerous concentration camps were built in Independent State of Croatia, most notably Jasenovac (in Croatian: Logor Jasenovac in Serbian: Логор Јасеновац / Logor Jasenovac), the largest, where hundreds of thousands of Serbs, Gypsies (Roma), Jews and Croatian dissidents died. It was established by the Ustaša regime of the Independent State of Croatia in August 1941 and not dismantled until April 1945, shortly before the end of the war. Other concentration camps were in Gospić, Pag, Đakovo, Jastrebarsko and Lepoglava.

According to the Simon Wiesenthal Center (citing the Encyclopedia of the Holocaust), "Ustasa terrorists killed 500,000 Serbs, expelled 250,000 and forced 250,000 to convert to Roman Catholicism. They murdered thousands of Jews and Gypsies."[86]

Jasenovac was a complex of five subcamps and three smaller camps spread out over 240 square kilometers (93 sq mi), in relatively close proximity to each other, on the bank of the Sava river. Most of the camp was at Jasenovac, about 100 km (62 mi) southeast of Zagreb. The complex also included large grounds at Donja Gradina directly across the Sava River, a camp for children in Sisak to the northwest, and a women's camp in Stara Gradiška to the southeast.

Ante Pavelić, leader of the Ustasha, fled to Argentina and Spain which gave him protection, and was never extradited to stand trial for his war crimes.

Crimes perpetrated by the Ukrainians

The ukrainian nazist OUN-B group, along with their military force – Ukrainian Insurgent Army(UPA) – are responsible for a genocide on the Polish population in Volhynia and Eastern Galicia. Starting in March 1943, with its peak in the summer 1943, as many as 130,000 people (according to Ewa Siemaszko) were murdered, mostly women, children and elderly. Although the main target were the Poles, many Jews, Czechs and those Ukrainians who were not willing to participate in the crimes, were massacred as well. Lacking good armament and ammunition, UPA members commonly used tools such as axes and pitchforks for the slaughter. As a result of these massacres, almost the entire non-Ukrainian population of Volhynia was either killed or forced to flee.

UPA commanders responsible for the genocide:

Allied powers

Crimes perpetrated by the Soviet Union

Main article: Soviet war crimes
Concurrent with World War II
Incident type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Katyń massacre War crimes (Murder of Polish intelligentsia) Lavrenty Beria, Joseph Stalin[87][88][89] An NKVD-committed massacre of tens of thousands of Polish officers and intelligentsia throughout the spring of 1940. Originally believed to have been committed by the Nazis in 1941 (after the invasion of eastern Poland and the USSR), it was finally admitted by Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990 that it had been a Soviet operation.
Invasion of Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia War crimes Vladimir Dekanozov, Andrey Vyshinsky, Andrei Zhdanov, Ivan Serov, Joseph Stalin An NKVD-committed deportation of hundreds of thousands of Baltic intelligentsia, land holders and their families in June 1941 and again in January 1949.
Nemmersdorf massacre, East Prussia War crimes No prosecutions Nemmersdorf (today Mayakovskoye in Kaliningrad) was one of the first German settlements to fall to the advancing Red Army on October 22, 1944. It was recaptured by the Germans soon afterwards and the German authorities reported that the Red Army killed civilians there. Nazi propaganda widely disseminated the description of the event with horrible details, supposedly to boost the determination of German soldiers to resist the general Soviet advance. Because the incident was investigated by the Nazis and reports were disseminated as Nazi propaganda, discerning the facts from the fiction of the incident is difficult.
Invasion of East Prussia War crimes War crimes committed by Soviet troops in the areas of Germany occupied by the Red Army. Estimated number of civilian victims in the years 1944–46: at least 300,000 (but not all of them victims of war crimes, many died through starvation, the cold climate and diseases)[90][91][92]
Treuenbrietzen War crimes Following the capture of the German city of Treuenbrietzen after fierce fighting. Over a period of several days at the end of April and beginning of May roughly 1000 inhabitants of the city, most of them men, were executed by Soviet troops.[93]
Battle of Berlin War crimes (Mass rape)[94]
Flight and expulsion of Germans from Poland during and after World War II,

Expulsion of Germans after World War II

War crimes, Crimes against humanity (mass expulsion) War crimes committed by Soviet troops in the areas of Germany occupied by the Red Army (Eastern and Central Germany), in addition to ethnic-German populations of German controlled, Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. Estimated number of civilian victims in the years 1944–46: at least 300,000 (but not all of them victims of war crimes, many died through starvation, the cold climate and diseases[90][91][92]

Crimes perpetrated by the United Kingdom

Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
Unrestricted submarine warfare against merchant shipping Breach of London Naval Treaty (1930) no prosecutions; Allied representatives admitted responsibility at Nuremberg Trials; questionable whether war crime or a breach of a treaty. It was the conclusion of the Nuremberg Trials of Karl Dönitz that Britain had been in breach of the Treaty "in particular of an order of the British Admiralty announced on 8 May 1940, according to which all vessels should be sunk at sight in the Skagerrak."[95]
HMS Torbay incident War crimes (Murder of shipwreck survivors) no prosecutions In July 1941, the submarine HMS Torbay (under the command of Anthony Miers) was based in the Mediterranean where it sank several German ships. On two occasions, once off the coast of Alexandria, Egypt, and the other off the coast of Crete, the crew attacked and killed dozens of shipwrecked German sailors and troops. None of the shipwrecked survivors posed a major threat to Torbay's crew. Miers made no attempt to hide his actions, and reported them in his official logs. He received a strongly worded reprimand from his superiors following the first incident. Meir's actions violated the Hague Convention of 1907, which banned the killing of shipwreck survivors under any circumstances.[96][97]

Crimes perpetrated by the United States

Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Unrestricted submarine warfare against merchant shipping Breach of London Naval Treaty (1930) no prosecutions; Chester Nimitz admitted responsibility at Nuremberg Trials; questionable whether war crime or a breach of a treaty. During the post war Nuremberg Trials, in evidence presented at the trial of Karl Dönitz on his orders to the U-boat fleet to breach the London Rules, Admiral Chester Nimitz stated that unrestricted submarine warfare was carried on in the Pacific Ocean by the United States from the first day that nation entered the war.[95]
Canicattì massacre War crimes (Murder of civilians) no prosecutions During the Allied invasion of Sicily, eight civilians were killed, though the exact number of casualties is uncertain.[98]
Biscari massacre War crimes (Murder of POWs) Sergeant Horace T. West: court-martialed and was found guilty, stripped of rank and sentenced to life in prison, though he was later released as a private. Captain John T. Compton was court-martialed for killing 40 POWs in his charge. He claimed to be following orders. The investigating officer and the Judge Advocate declared that Compton's actions were unlawful, but he was acquitted. Following the capture of Biscari Airfield in Sicily on July 14, 1943, seventy-six German and Italian POWs were shot by American troops of the 180th Regimental Combat Team, 45th Division during the Allied invasion of Sicily. These killings occurred in two separate incidents between July and August 1943.
Dachau liberation reprisals War crimes (Murder of POWs) Investigated by U.S. forces, found lack of evidence to charge any individual, and a lack of evidence of any practice or policy; however, did find that SS guards were separated from Wehrmacht (regular German Army) prisoners before their deaths. Some Death's Head SS guards of the Dachau concentration camp allegedly attempted to escape, and were shot.
Salina, Utah POW massacre War crimes (Murder of POWs) Private Clarence V. Bertucci determined to be insane and confined to a mental institution Private Clarence V. Bertucci fired a machine gun from one of the guard towers into the tents that were being used to accommodate the German prisoners of war. Nine were killed and 20 were injured.
Rheinwiesenlager[99] War crimes (Deaths of POWs from starvation and exposure) no prosecutions The Rheinwiesenlager (Rhine meadow camps) were transit camps for millions of German POWs after World War II; there were at least thousands and potentially tens of thousands of deaths from starvation and exposure. Estimates range from just over 3,000 to as many as 71,000.
American mutilation of Japanese war dead[100][101][102] War crimes (Abuse of Remains) Though there are no known prosecutions, the occasional mutilation of Japanese remains were recognized to have been conducted by U.S. forces, declared to be atrocities, and explicitly forbidden by order of the U.S. Judge Advocate General in 1943–1944. Many dead Japanese were desecrated and/or mutilated, for example by taking body parts (such as skulls) as souvenirs or trophies. This is in violation of the law and custom of war, as well as the 1929 Geneva Convention on the Sick and Wounded which was paraphrased as saying "After every engagement, the belligerent who remains in possession of the field shall take measures to search for wounded and the dead and to protect them from robbery and ill-treatment." in a 1944 memorandum for the U.S. Assistant Chief of the Staff.[103][104]

Crimes perpetrated by the Yugoslav Partisans

Armed conflict Perpetrator
World War II in Yugoslavia Yugoslavian partisans
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Bleiburg tragedy War crimes No prosecutions. The victims were Yugoslav collaborationist troops (ethnic Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes), executed without trial as an act of vengeance for the genocide committed by the pro-Axis collaborationist regimes (in particular the Ustaše) installed by the Nazis during the World War II occupation of Yugoslavia. Estimates vary significantly, questioned by a number of historians.
Foibe massacres War crimes No prosecutions. Following Italy's 1943 armistice with the Allied powers up to 1945, Yugoslav resistance forces executed an unknown number of ethnic Italians accused of collaboration.[105]
1944–1945 killings in Bačka War crimes No prosecutions. 1944–1945 killings of ethnic Hungarians in Bačka.

1948 Arab–Israeli War

Several massacres were committed during this war which could be described as war crimes. Nearly 15,000 people, mostly combatants and militants, were killed during the war, including 6,000 Jews and about 8,000 Arabs.

1945–1949: Indonesian War of Independence

1948–1960: Malayan Emergency

1950–1953: Korean War

United States perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Korean War United States
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
No Gun Ri massacre War crimes United States In July 1950, during the early weeks of the Korean War, an undetermined number of South Korean refugees were killed by the 2nd Battalion, 7th U.S. Cavalry Regiment, and a U.S. air attack at a railroad bridge near the village of No Gun Ri, 100 miles (160 km) southeast of Seoul, South Korea. Commanders feared enemy infiltrators among such refugee columns. Estimates of the dead have ranged from dozens to 500. In 2005, a South Korean government committee certified the names of 163 dead or missing and 55 wounded and added that many other victims' names were not reported; the U.S. Army cites the number of casualties as "unknown".[113]

North Korean and Chinese perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Korean War North Korea and China
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Seoul National University Hospital Massacre War crimes North Korea The Seoul National University Hospital Massacre (Korean: 서울대학교 부속병원 학살 사건 Hanja: 서울國立大學校附属病院虐殺事件) was a massacre committed by the North Korean Army on June 18, 1950, of 700 to 900 doctors, nurses, inpatient civilians and wounded soldiers at the Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul district of South Korea.[114][115][116] During the First Battle of Seoul, the North Korean Army wiped out one platoon which guarded Seoul National University Hospital on June 28, 1950.[114][115] They massacred medical personnel, inpatients and wounded soldiers.[114][115] The North Korean Army shot or buried the people alive.[114][115] The victims amounted to 900.[114][115] According to South Korean Ministry of National Defense, the victims included 100 South Korean wounded soldiers.[115]
Chaplain–Medic massacre War crimes (Murder of wounded military personnel and a chaplain) North Korea On July 16, 1950, 30 unarmed, critically wounded U.S. Army soldiers and an unarmed chaplain were killed by members of the North Korean People's Army during the Battle of Taejon.
Bloody Gulch massacre War crimes (Murder of prisoners of war) North Korea On August 12, 1950, 75 captured U.S. Army prisoners of war were executed by members of the North Korean People's Army on a mountain above the village of Tunam, South Korea, during one of the smaller engagements of the Battle of Pusan Perimeter.
Hill 303 massacre War crimes (Murder of prisoners of war) North Korea On August 17, 1950, following a UN airstrike on Hill 131 which was already occupied by the North Korean Army from the Americans, a North Korean officer said that the American soldiers were closing in on them and they could not continue to hold the captured American prisoners. The officer ordered the men shot, and the North Koreans then fired into the kneeling Americans as they rested in the gully, killing 41.

South Korean perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Korean War South Korea
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Bodo League massacre War crimes, Crimes against humanity (mass murder of civilians) South Korea The Bodo League massacre (Hangul: 보도연맹 사건; Hanja: 保導聯盟事件) was a massacre and war crime against communists and suspected sympathizers that occurred in the summer of 1950 during the Korean War. Estimates of the death toll vary. According to Prof. Kim Dong-Choon, Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, at least 100,000 people were executed on suspicion of supporting communism;[119] others estimate 200,000 deaths.[120] The massacre was wrongly blamed on the communists for decades.[121]
Goyang Geumjeong Cave Massacre War crimes South Korea The Goyang Geumjeong Cave Massacre (Korean: 고양 금정굴 민간인 학살[122][123] Hanja: 高陽衿井窟民間人虐殺[122][123] Goyang Geunjeong Cave civilian massacre[122][123]) was a massacre conducted by the police officers of Goyang Police Station of the South Korean Police under the commanding of head of Goyang police station between 9 October 1950 and 31 October 1950 of 150 or over 153 unarmed citizens in Goyang, Gyeonggi-do district of South Korea.[122][123][124] After the victory of the Second Battle of Seoul, South Korean police arrested and killed people and their families who they suspected had been sympathizers during North Korean rule.[123] During the massacre, South Korean Police conducted Namyangju Massacre in Namyangju near Goyang.[125]
Sancheong-Hamyang massacre War Crimes South Korea The Sancheong-Hamyang massacre (Hangul: 산청・함양 양민 학살 사건; Hanja: 山清・咸陽良民虐殺事件) was a massacre conducted by a unit of the South Korean Army 11th Division during the Korean War. On February 7, 1951, 705 unarmed citizens in Sancheong and Hamyang, South Gyeongsang district of South Korea were killed. The victims were civilians and 85% of them were women, children, and elderly people.
Ganghwa massacre War crimes South Korea The Ganghwa (Geochang) massacre (Hangul: 거창 양민 학살 사건; Hanja: 居昌良民虐殺事件) was a massacre conducted by the third battalion of the 9th regiment of the 11th Division of the South Korean Army between February 9, 1951, and February 11, 1951, on 719 unarmed citizens in Geochang, South Gyeongsang district of South Korea. The victims included 385 children.

1952–1960: Mau Mau uprising

1954–1962: Algerian War

French army has committed a systematic ethnic cleansing of the local Algerian people resulting for more than 5 million people were killed between 1830 and 1962 by the French army and its armed militias. the example of massacre were the massacre of Zaatcha Massacre, Al-Aghwat massacre, Setif and Guelma, 8 May 1945 and the bombing of the Algerian towns and civilian by the French army between 1954 and 1962 only about 1.5 million Algerian have been killed and massacred by the French army and mostly they were civilian population.

1954–1975: Vietnam War

United States perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Vietnam War United States
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
My Lai Massacre War crimes Lt. William Calley convicted in 1971 of premeditated murder of 22 civilians for his role in the massacre and sentenced to life in prison. He served 3½ years under house arrest. Others were indicted but not convicted. On March 16, 1968, a US army platoon led by Lt. William Calley killed (and in some cases beat, raped, tortured, or maimed) 347 to 504 unarmed civilians primarily women, children, and old men in the hamlets of My Lai and My Khe of Sơn Mỹ. The My Lai Massacre was allegedly an operation of the Phoenix Program. 26 US soldiers, including 14 officers, were charged with crimes related to the My Lai massacre and its coverup. Most of the charges were eventually dropped, and only Lt. Calley was convicted.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: List of war crimes

South Korean perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Vietnam War South Korea
Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
Tây Vinh Massacre War crimes South Korea This was a series of massacres purportedly conducted by the ROK Capital Division of the South Korean Army between February 12, 1966 and March 17, 1966 of 1,200 unarmed citizens in Bình An village, today Tây Vinh village, Tây Sơn District of Bình Định Province in South Vietnam.[139][140]
Gò Dài massacre War crimes South Korea This was a massacre purportedly conducted by the ROK Capital Division of the South Korean Army on 26 February 1966 of civilians in Gò Dài hamlet, in Bình An commune, Tây Sơn District (today Tây Vinh District) of Bình Định Province in South Vietnam.[141][142]
Hà My massacre War crimes South Korea This was a massacre purportedly conducted by the South Korean Marines on 25 February 1968 of civilians in Hà My village, Quảng Nam Province in South Vietnam.[143]

North Vietnamese and Vietcong perpetrated crimes

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Vietnam War North Vietnam and Vietcong
Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
Massacre at Huế War crimes; Crime of Torture North Vietnam and Viet Cong During the months and years that followed the Battle of Huế, which began on January 31, 1968, and lasted a total of 28 days, dozens of mass graves were discovered in and around Huế. North Vietnamese troops executed between 2,800 and 6,000 civilians and prisoners of war.[144] Victims were found bound, tortured, and sometimes apparently buried alive.[145][146][147]
Đắk Sơn massacre War crimes Viet Cong On December 5, 1967, two battalions of Viet Cong systematically killed 252 civilians in a "vengeance" attack on the hamlet of Đắk Sơn, home to over 2,000 Montagnards, known for their fierce opposition to the Viet Cong. The Vietcong believed that the hamlet had at one point given aid to refugees fleeing Viet Cong forces.[148]

Late 1960s–1998: The Troubles

1971 Bangladesh Liberation War

Armed conflict Perpetrator
1971 Bangladesh War Pakistan
Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
1971 Bangladesh genocide War crimes, Crimes against humanity, Crime of genocide (murder of civilians; genocide) Allegedly the Pakistan Government, and the Pakistan Army and its local collaborators. A case was filed in the Federal Court of Australia on September 20, 2006 for crimes of Genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.[160] During the Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971, widespread atrocities were committed against the Bengali population of East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). With 1–3 million people killed in nine months, 'genocide' is the term that is used to describe the event in almost every major publication and newspaper.[161][162] Although the word 'genocide' was and is still used frequently amongst observers and scholars of the events that transpired during the 1971 war, the allegations that a genocide took place during the Bangladesh War of 1971 were never investigated by an international tribunal set up under the auspices of the United Nations, due to complications arising from the Cold War. A process is underway in 2009–2010 to begin trials of some local war collaborators.
Civilian Casualties War crimes no prosecutions The number of civilians that died in the liberation war of Bangladesh is not known in any reliable accuracy. There has been a great disparity in the casualty figures put forth by Pakistan on one hand (26,000, as reported in the now discredited Hamoodur Rahman Commission[163]) and India and Bangladesh on the other hand (From 1972 to 1975 the first post-war prime minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, estimated that 3 million died[164]). This is the figure officially maintained by the Government of Bangladesh. Most scholarship on the topic estimate the number killed to be between 1 and 3 million.[165] A further eight to ten million people fled the country to seek safety in India.[166]
Atrocities on women and minorities Crimes against humanity; Crime of genocide; Crime of torture (torture, rape and murder of civilians) no prosecutions The minorities of Bangladesh, especially the Hindus, were specific targets of the Pakistan army.[167] Numerous East Pakistani women were tortured, raped and killed during the war. The exact numbers are not known and are a subject of debate. Bangladeshi sources cite a figure of 200,000 women raped, giving birth to thousands of war-babies. Some other sources, for example Susan Brownmiller, refer to an even higher number of over 400,000. Pakistani sources claim the number is much lower, though having not completely denied rape incidents.[168][169][170]
Killing of intellectuals War crimes no prosecutions During the war, the Pakistan Army and its local supporters carried out a systematic execution of the leading Bengali intellectuals. A number of university professors from Dhaka University were killed during the first few days of the war.[171][172] However, the most extreme cases of targeted killing of intellectuals took place during the last few days of the war. On December 14, 1971, only two days before surrendering to the Indian military and the Mukhti Bahini forces, the Pakistani army with the assistance of the Al Badr and Al Shams systematically executed well over 200 of East Pakistan's intellectuals and scholars.[173][174]

Bihari and pro Pakistanis massacre in Bangladesh

It is estimated that Bangladesh guerilla army killed about 1,000 to 150,000 biharis or pro Pakistani razakars.

1970–1975: Cambodian civil war

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia for the Prosecution of Crimes Committed During the Period of Democratic Kampuchea, commonly known as the Cambodia Tribunal, is a joint court established by the Royal Government of Cambodia and the United Nations to try senior members of the Khmer Rouge for crimes against humanity committed during the Cambodian Civil War. The Khmer Rouge killed many people due to their political affiliation, education, class origin, occupation, or ethnicity.[175][176]

Indonesian Invasion of East Timor

During the 1975 invasion and the subsequent occupation, Indonesian forces murdered tens of thousands of civilians.

1975–1990: Lebanese Civil War

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Lebanese Civil War Various
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Black Saturday War crime (200 to 600 killed) Kataeb Party On December 6, 1975, Black Saturday was a series of massacres and armed clashes in Beirut, that occurred in the first stages of the Lebanese Civil War.
Karantina massacre War crime (Estimated 1,000 to 1,500 killed) Kataeb Party, Guardians of the Cedars, Tigers Militia Took place early in the Lebanese Civil War on January 18, 1976. Karantina was overrun by the Lebanese Christian militias, resulting in the deaths of approximately 1,000–1,500 people.
Tel al-Zaatar massacre War Crime (Estimated 1,000 to 3,000 killed) Lebanese Front, Tigers Militia, Syrian Army, Lebanese Armed Forces The Tel al-Zaatar Battle took place during the Lebanese Civil War from June 22 – August 12, 1976. Tel al-Zaatar was a UNRWA administered Palestinian Refugee camp housing approximately 50,000–60,000 refugees in northeast Beirut. Tel al-Zaatar massacre refers to crimes committed around this battle.
Damour massacre War crime (Estimated 684 civilians killed) PLO, Lebanese National Movement Took place on January 20, 1976. Damour, a Christian town on the main highway south of Beirut. It was attacked by the Palestine Liberation Organisation units. Part of its population died in battle or in the massacre that followed, and the remainder were forced to flee.
Sabra and Shatila massacre War crime (762 to 3,500 (number disputed)) Kataeb Party Took place in Sabra and the Shatila refugee camp Palestinian refugee camps in Beirut, Lebanon between September 16 and September 18, 1982. Palestinian and Lebanese civilians were massacred in the camps by Christian Lebanese Phalangists while the camp was surrounded by the Israel Defense Forces. Israeli forces controlled the entrances to the refugee camps of Palestinians and controlled the entrance to the city. The massacre was immediately preceded by the assassination of Bachir Gemayel, the leader of the Lebanese Kataeb Party. Following the assassination, an armed group entered the camp and murdered inhabitants during the night. It is now generally agreed that the killers were "the Young Men", a gang recruited by Elie Hobeika.[177]
1983 Beirut barracks bombing War crimes, crimes against peace (Attacks against parties not involved in a war), Islamic Jihad Organization On October 23, 1983, 241 American servicemen and 58 French paratroopers were killed in their barracks at the Beirut International Airport when Islamic militants drove their trucks filled with bombs and struck separate buildings housing United States and French members of the Multinational Force in Lebanon.
October 13 massacre War crime (500–700 killed during the fighting. Additionally at least 240 unarmed prisoners executed, including civilians) Syrian Army, Hafez al-Assad Took place on October 13, 1990, during the final moments of the Lebanese Civil War, when hundreds of Lebanese soldiers were executed after they surrendered to Syrian forces.[178]

1978–present: Civil war in Afghanistan

This war has ravaged the country for over 30 years now, with several foreign actors playing important roles during different periods. Since 2001 US and NATO troops have been fighting in Afghanistan in the "War on Terrorism" that is also treated in the corresponding section below.

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Civil war in Afghanistan Taliban
Incident Type of crime Persons responsible Notes
Executions and torture after fall of Mazar-i-Sharif on August 8, 1998 War crimes; Crime of torture (Murder, cruel or degrading treatment and torture; Summary execution) Taliban Mass killing of the locals; 4,000 to 5,000 civilians were executed, and many more reported tortured.
Assassination of Iranian diplomats War crimes; offenses against the customary law of nations (outrages upon diplomatic plenipotentiaries and agents) Taliban 8 Iranian diplomats were assassinated and an Iranian press correspondent was murdered by the Taliban.
Murder of Ahmed Shah Massoud, on September 9, 2001 War crimes (Perfidious use of suicide bombers disguised as journalists (who are protected persons) in murder.) Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Al Qaeda Perfidiously used suicide bombers disguised as television journalists to murder Ahmed Shah Massoud, leader of the Northern Alliance, the leader of the only remaining military opponent of the Taliban, two days before the September 11th Attacks, constituting a failure to bear arms openly, and misuse of the status of protected persons, to wit, journalists in war zones.
Civil war in AfghanistanNorthern Alliance
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Atrocities against Taliban prisoners of war War crimes (Maltreatment leading to death of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan POWs (Taliban)) Northern Alliance partisans Allegedly did place captured Taliban POWs in cargo containers, and did seal them, leading to deaths of those within due to suffocation and excessive heat, thereby constituting war crimes.
Civil war in AfghanistanUnited States Army / British Royal Marines
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Torture of prisoners War crimes (Maltreatment leading to death of prisoners) United States Armed Forces homicides of at least two unarmed prisoners, allegations of widespread pattern of abuse
Kandahar massacre Murder and wounding of civilians United States Armed Forces Nine of the victims were children. Some of the corpses were partially burned.
Maywand District murders Murder of at least 3 Afghans United States Armed Forces Five members of a platoon were indicted for murder and collecting body parts as trophies. In addition, seven soldiers were charged with crimes such as hashish use, impeding an investigation, and attacking their team member who blew the whistle after he had participated in the crimes.
2011 Helmand Province incident Murder of a wounded prisoner British Royal Marines

1980–1988: Iran – Iraq War

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Iran–Iraq War Iraq
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Iran – Iraq War Crimes against peace (Waging a war of aggression) no prosecutions In 1980, Iraq invaded neighboring Iran, allegedly to capture Iraqi territory held by Iran.
Use of chemical weaponsWar crimes, Use of poisons as weapons (Violation of the 1925 Geneva Protocol[179]) No prosecutions Iraq made extensive use of chemical weapons, including mustard gas and nerve agents such as tabun. Iraqi chemical weapons were responsible for over 100,000 Iranian casualties (including 20,000 deaths).[180]
Attacks on neutral shipping War crimes, crimes against peace (Attacks against parties not involved in a war) No prosecutions Iraq attacked oil tankers from neutral nations in an attempt to disrupt enemy trade
Al-Anfal Campaign Crimes against humanity; Crime of Genocide No prosecutions A genocidal campaign by Baathist Iraq against the Kurdish people (and other non-Arab populations) in northern Iraq, led by President Saddam Hussein and headed by Ali Hassan al-Majid in the final stages of Iran–Iraq War. The campaign also targeted other minority communities in Iraq including Assyrians, Shabaks, Iraqi Turkmens, Yazidis, Mandeans, and many villages belonging to these ethnic groups were also destroyed.[181]
Halabja poison gas attack Dutch court has ruled that the incident involved War Crimes and Genocide (part of the Al-Anfal Campaign); also may involve the Use of poisons as weapons and Crimes against humanity. Ali Hassan Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti, officially titled Secretary General of the Northern Bureau of the Ba'ath Party from March 1987 to April 1989, and advisor to Saddam Hussein, was convicted in June 2007 of war crimes and was sentenced to death by an Iraqi court, along with accomplices Sultan Hashem Ahmed and Hussein Rashid Mohammed.
Frans van Anraat war crime.
Iraq also used chemical weapons against their own Kurdish population causing casualties estimated between several hundred up to 5,000 deaths.[182] On December 23, 2005 a Dutch court ruled in a case brought against Frans van Anraat for supplying chemicals to Iraq, that "[it] thinks and considers legally and convincingly proven that the Kurdish population meets the requirement under the genocide conventions as an ethnic group. The court has no other conclusion that these attacks were committed with the intent to destroy the Kurdish population of Iraq." and because he supplied the chemicals before 16 March 1988, the date of the Halabja attack, he is guilty of a war crime but not guilty of complicity in genocide.[183][184]
Armed conflict Perpetrator
Iran – Iraq War Iran
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Attacks on neutral shipping War crimes, crimes against peace (Attacks against parties not involved in the war) no prosecutions Iran attacked oil tankers from neutral nations in an attempt to disrupt enemy trade.
Using child soldiers in suicide missions War crimes (Using child soldiers) no prosecutions Iran allegedly used volunteers (among them children) in high risk operations for example in clearing mine fields within hours to allow the advancement of regular troops.

One source estimates 3% of the Iran-Iraq War's casualties were under the age of 14.[185]

Laid mines in international waters no prosecutions Mines damaged the US frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts

Over 100,000 civilians other than those killed in Saddam's genocide are estimated to have been killed by both sides of the war by R.J.Rummel.

1985–present: Uganda

The Times reports (November 26, 2005 p. 27):

Almost 20 years of fighting... has killed half a million people. Many of the dead are children... The LRA [a cannibalism cult][186] kidnaps children and forces them to join its ranks. And so, incredibly, children are not only the main victims of this war, but also its unwilling perpetrators... The girls told me they had been given to rebel commanders as "wives" and forced to bear them children. The boys said they had been forced to walk for days knowing they would be killed if they showed any weakness, and in some cases forced even to murder their family members... every night up to 10,000 children walk into the centre of Kitgum... because they are not safe in their own beds... more than 25,000 children have been kidnapped ...this year an average of 20 children have been abducted every week.

1991–1999: Yugoslav wars

1991–1995: Croatian War of Independence

Also see List of ICTY indictees for a variety of war criminals and crimes during this era.

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Croatian War of Independence Yugoslav People's Army, Army of Serbian Krajina and paramilitary units.
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Battle of Vukovar War crimes (indiscriminate shelling of city for 87 days until it was leveled to the ground. At least 1.798 killed, civilians and soldiers)[187] JNA, Serb Volunteer Guard. Mile Mrkšić and Veselin Šljivančanin sentenced by the ICTY. August 25-November 18, 1991
Ovčara massacre[188] War crimes (Over 264 civilians and wounded POWs executed after Battle of Vukovar) Serb Territorial Defense and paramilitary units. Mile Mrkšić sentenced to 20 years, Veselin Šljivančanin sentenced to 5 years. Miroslav Radić acquitted. 18–21 November 1991; bodies buried in a mass grave
Stajićevo camp, Morinj camp, Sremska Mitrovica camp, Velepromet camp, Knin camp Torture of POWs and illegal detention of civilians Milosevic indicted by the ICTY. November 1991-March 1992
Dalj killings[189] War crimes (Execution of 11 detainees) Territorial Defense of SAO SBWS under Željko Ražnatović. Dalj was also one of the charges on the Slobodan Milošević ICTY indictment. 21 September 1991; bodies buried in a mass grave in the village of Celija
Dalj massacre[189] War crimes (Massacre of 28 detainees) Territorial Defense of SAO SBWS under Željko Ražnatović. Dalj was also one of the charges on the Slobodan Milošević ICTY indictment. 4 October 1991
Lovas massacre[190] War crimes Yugoslav People's Army, Territorial Defense of SAO SBWS and Dušan Silni paramilitary unit. Ljuban Devetak and 17 individuals are being tried by Croatian courts. Lovas was also one of the charges on the Slobodan Milošević ICTY indictment. 10 October 1991
Široka Kula massacre[191] War crimes JNA and Krajina Serb Territorial Defense. Široka Kula near Gospić. On October 13, 1991.
Baćin massacre[191] War crimes Serb Territorial Defense forces and SAO Krajina militia. Milan Babić and Milan Martić convicted by ICTY. Baćin was also one of the charges on the Slobodan Milošević ICTY indictment. On 21 October 1991.
Saborsko massacre[191] War crimes Serb-led JNA (special JNA unit from Niš), TO forces, rebel Serbs militia. Milan Babić and Milan Martić convicted. On October 28, November 7, and November 12, 1991.
Erdut massacre War crimes (killing of 37 civilians)[192] Željko Ražnatović, Slobodan Milošević, Goran Hadžić, Jovica Stanišić and Franko Simatović indicted by the ICTY. November 1991-February 1992
Škabrnja massacre[193] War crimes Serb forces. Milan Babić and Milan Martić convicted. On November 18, 1991.
Siege of Dubrovnik[194] War crimes JNA and Montenegrin territorial forces. Several JNA commanders sentenced. Shelling of UNESCO protected World Heritage site. October 1991.
Voćin massacre[195] War crimes White Eagles paramilitary group under Vojislav Šešelj, indicted by ICTY. Voćin was also one of the charges on the Slobodan Milošević ICTY indictment. 13 December 1991.
Bruška massacre[196] War crimes Serb forces. Milan Babić and Milan Martić convicted. On December 21, 1991.
Zagreb rocket attack[197] War crimes RSK Serb forces. Leader Milan Martić bragged on Television about ordering the assault, the videotape being used against him at ICTY, convicted. Rocket attack was started as revenge for Serb military defeat in Operation Flash.
Ethnic cleansing in Serb Krajina[191] Crimes against humanity (Serb forces forcibly removed virtually all non-Serbs living there-nearly a quarter of a million people (mostly Croats))[198] JNA and Serb paramilitaries. Many people, including leaders Milan Babić and Milan Martić, convicted at ICTY and Croatian courts. June–December 1991
Armed conflict Perpetrator
Croatian War of IndependenceCroatian Army and paramilitary units
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Lora prison camp Crime of torture, War crimes (Torture of POWs) Croatian army. Several people convicted by Croatian courts. Croatian internment camp for Serb soldiers and civilians between 1992 and 1997
Gospić massacre War crimes Croatian army. Commander Mirko Norac and others convicted by Croatian courts. 16–18 October 1991
Operation Otkos 10[199] War crimes Croatian army. No prosecutions 31 October – 4 November 1991
Miljevci plateau incident War crimes (Killings of 40 militiamen) Croatian army. No prosecutions 21 June 1992; invasion and permanent occupation of territory under international protection; bodies buried in mass graves nearby
Battle for Maslenica Bridge War crimes (Killings of 490 or 491 individuals, including civilians) Croatian army. No prosecutions 22 January – 1 February 1993; invasion of territory under international protection
Mirlovic Polje incident[200] War crimes Croatian paramilitaries. No prosecutions 6 September 1993; 5 men and 2 women, four were executed and three burned alive at the stake
Operation Medak Pocket War crimes, Crime against peace (Killings of 29 civilians and 71 soldiers;[201] wounding 4 UN peacekeepers) Croatian army. Commanders Janko Bobetko, Rahim Ademi and Mirko Norac. Ademi acquitted, Bobetko died in the meantime, Norac sentenced to 7 years. 9–17 September 1993; invasion of territory under international protection and assault on UN peacekeeping forces
Operation Flash War crimes Croatian army. No prosecutions 1–3 May 1995; invasion and permanent occupation of territory under international protection; Western Slavonia fully taken from RSK; 53 were killed in their own homes, while 30 during the Croatian raids of the refugee colons.
Operation Storm War crimes (Killings of at least 677 civilians, 150–200,000 Serbian refugees[202]) Croatian army. Generals Ante Gotovina and Mladen Markač ultimately acquitted by the ICTY.[203][204] 4–8 August 1995; invasion and permanent occupation of territory under international protection; Individual war crimes committed during the operation.

1992–1995: Bosnian War

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Bosnian War Serb forces, Army of Republika Srpska, Paramilitary units from Serbia, local Serb police and civilians.
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Srebrenica Massacre[205] Crimes against humanity;Crime of genocide (Murder of over 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys) Army of Republika Srpska. President Radovan Karadžić and General Ratko Mladić charged. Following the fall of the eastern Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica the men were separated from the women and executed over a period of several days in July 1995.
Prijedor massacre[206] Crimes against humanity (5,200 killed and missing) Army of Republika Srpska. Milomir Stakić convicted. Numerous war crimes committed during the Bosnian war by the Serb political and military leadership mostly on Bosniak civilians in the Prijedor region of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Višegrad massacre[207] Crimes against humanity (Murder of over 3,000 civilians) Serbian police and military forces. Seven officers convicted. Acts of ethnic cleansing and mass murder of Bosniak civilians that occurred in the town of Višegrad in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina, committed by Serb police and military forces at the start of the Bosnian War during the spring of 1992.
Foča massacres[208] Crimes against humanity (Murder of over 2,704 civilians) Army of Republika Srpska. Eight officers and soldiers convicted. A series of killings committed by Serb military, police and paramilitary forces on Bosniak civilians in the Foča region of Bosnia-Herzegovina (including the towns of Gacko and Kalinovik) from April 7, 1992 to January, 1994. In numerous verdicts, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia ruled that these killings constituted crimes against humanity and acts of genocide.
Markale massacre[209] War crimes Army of Republika Srpska. Stanislav Galić convicted The victims were civilians who were shopping in an open-air market in Sarajevo when Serb forces shelled the market. Two separate incidents. February 1994; 68 killed and 144 wounded and August 1995; 37 killed and 90 wounded.
Siege of Sarajevo[210] War crimes Army of Republika Srpska. Stanislav Galić and Dragomir Milošević, were sentenced to life imprisonment and to 33 years imprisonment, respectively. The longest siege of a capital city in the history of modern warfare. Republika Srpska and the Yugoslav People's Army besieged Sarajevo, the capital city of Bosnia and Herzegovina, from April 5, 1992 to February 29, 1996.
Siege of Bihać War crimes Army of Republika Srpska. From April 1992 to August 1995.
Tuzla massacre[211] War crimes Army of Republika Srpska. ARS Officer Novak Đukić on trial. On May 25, 1995 the Serb army shelled the city of Tuzla and killed 72 people with a single shell.
Korićani Cliffs massacre[212][213] War crimes Serbian reserve police. Darko Mrđa was convicted. Mass murder of more than 200 Bosniak men on 21 August 1992 at the Korićani Cliffs (Korićanske Stijene) location on Mount Vlašić, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Ahatovići massacre[214] War crimes; Crime of torture (64 men and boys tortured, 56 killed) Army of the Republika Srpska. No prosecutions. Rounded up in an attack on a village, they were tortured. Claiming they were going to be exchanged, Serb forces put them on a bus, which they attacked with machine guns and grenades on June 14, 1992. 8 survived by hiding under bodies of the dead.
Paklenik Massacre[215] War crimes Army of the Republika Srpska. Four indicted. the massacre of at least 50 Bosniaks by Bosnian Serb Army in the Rogatica Municipality on 15 June 1992.
Bosanska Jagodina massacre[216] War crimes Army of the Republika Srpska. No prosecutions. The execution of 17 Bosniak civilians from Višegrad on 26 May 1992, all of which were men.
Armed conflict Perpetrator
Bosnian WarCroat forces, HVO.
Incident Type of crimePersons responsible-
Ahmići massacre[217] Crimes against humanity according to ICTY, (ethnic cleansing, murder of civilians) Croatian Defence Council, Tihomir Blaškić convicted. On April 16, 1993, the Croatian Defence Council attacked the village of Ahmići and killed 116 Bosniaks.
Stupni Do massacre[218] Crimes against humanity according to ICTY; (Murder of 37 civilians) Croatian Defence Council, Ivica Rajić convicted. On October 23, 1993, the Croatian Defence Council attacked the village of Stupni do and killed 37 Bosniaks
Lašva Valley ethnic cleansing[219] Crimes against humanity according to ICTY. (2,000 civilians killed and missing) Croatian Defence Council. Nine politicians and officers convicted, among them Dario Kordić. Numerous war crimes committed by the Croatian Community of Herzeg-Bosnia's political and military leadership on Bosnian Muslim (Bosniak) civilians in the Lašva Valley region of Bosnia-Herzegovina, from April, 1993 to February, 1994.
Armed conflict perpetrator
Bosnian WarBosniak forces, Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Incident type of crimePersons responsible-
Massacre in Grabovica[220] War crimes (13 civilians murdered) Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Nihad Vlahovljak, Sead Karagićm and Haris Rajkić convicted. 13 Croatian inhabitants of Grabovica village by members of the 9th Brigade and unidentified members of the Bosnian Army on the 8th or 9 September 1993.

1998–1999: Kosovo War

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Kosovo War Yugoslav army, Serbian police and paramilitary forces
Incident type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Račak massacre[221] War crimes Serbian police, no prosecutions 45 Kosovo Albanians were killed in the village of Račak in central Kosovo. The government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia asserted that the casualties were all members of the Kosovo Liberation Army who had been killed in a clash with state security forces.
Izbica massacre[222] War crimes Serbian police and paramilitaries, no prosecutions. 120 Albanian civilians killed by Serbian forces in the village of Izbica, in the Drenica region of central Kosovo on 28 March 1999.
Suva Reka massacre War crimes Serbian police. Four former-policemen were convicted and received prison sentences ranging from 13 to 20 years. The massacre took place in Suva Reka, in central Kosovo on 26 March 1999. The victims were locked inside a pizzeria into which two hand grenades were thrown. Before taking the bodies out of the pizzeria, the police allegedly shot anyone still showing signs of life.
Ćuška massacre War crimes Yugoslav Army, Serbian police, paramilitary and Bosnian Serb volunteers, no prosecutions. Serbian forces summarily executed 41 Albanians in Ćuška on 14 May 1999, taking three groups of men into three different houses, where they were shot with automatic weapons and set on fire.
Massacre at Velika Kruša[223] War crimes Serbian special forces, no prosecutions. Massacre at Velika Kruša near Orahovac, Kosovo, took place during the Kosovo War on the afternoon of 25 March 1999 the day after the NATO air campaign began.
Podujevo massacre War crimes Serbian paramilitaries. Four convicted and sentenced to lengthy prison sentences. 19 Kosovo Albanian civilians, all women and children, were executed by Serbian paramilitary forces in March, 1999 in Podujevo, in eastern Kosovo.
Kosovo WarKosovo Liberation Army
Incident type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Lapušnik prison camp[224] War crimes Kosovo Liberation Army; Haradin Bala sentenced to 13 years. Detention camp (also referred to as a prison and concentration camp) near the city of Glogovac in central Kosovo during the Kosovo War, in 1998. The camp was used by Kosovo Albanian insurgents to collect and confine hundreds of male prisoners of Serb and non-Albanian ethnicity.
Klečka killings War crime; (murder of 22 Serbian civilians) Kosovo Liberation Army, no prosecutions 22 Kosovo Serb civilians were killed by Albanian insurgents in the village of Klečka, and their remains were cremated in a lime kiln.[225]
Lake Radonjić massacre[226][227] War crime; (murder of 34 civilians) Kosovo Liberation Army, no prosecutions 34 Serbs, non-Albanians and moderate Kosovo Albanians were killed by members of the Kosovo Liberation Army near Lake Radonjić[228]
Staro Gračko massacre[229] War crime; (murder of 14 Serb civilians) Kosovo Liberation Army, no prosecutions 14 Kosovo Serb farmers were executed by Kosovo Liberation Army gunmen, who then disfigured their corpses with blunt instruments.

1990–2000: Liberia / Sierra Leone

From The Times March 28, 2006 p. 43:

"Charles Taylor, the former Liberian President who is one of Africas most wanted men, has gone into hiding in Nigeria to avoid extradition to a UN war crimes tribunal... The UN war crimes tribunal in Sierra Leone holds Mr Taylor responsible for about 250,000 deaths. Throughout the 1990s, his armies and supporters, made up of child soldiers orphaned by the conflict wreaked havoc through a swath of West Africa. In Sierra Leone he supported the Revolutionary United Front (R.U.F) whose rebel fighters were notorious for hacking off the limbs of civilians.

1990: Invasion of Kuwait

Armed conflict Perpetrator
1990:Invasion of Kuwait Iraq
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Invasion of Kuwait Crimes against peace (waging a war of aggression for territorial aggrandizement; "breach of international peace and security" (UN Security Council Resolution 660)) no prosecutions Did conspire to levy and did levy a war of aggression against Kuwait, a sovereign state, took it by force of arms, did occupy it, and did annex it, by right of conquest, a right utterly alien, hostile, and repugnant to all extant international law, being a grave breach of the Charter of the United Nations, and the customary international law, adhered to by all civilized nations and armed groups, thus constituting Crimes against peace.
Invasion of Kuwait War crimes, Crime of torture, Criminal environmental modification (Destruction of resources; murder, persecution, and torture of civilians and soldiers; willful environmental devastation and modification) no prosecutions Country devastated, resources intentionally and wantonly destroyed for no militarily necessitous purpose, murder of civilians, torture of residents and citizens of Kuwait, attempted criminal environmental modification on a global scale through intentional oil spills and soot from intentional oil well fires.

1991–2000/2002: Algerian Civil War

During the Algerian Civil War of the 1990s, a variety of massacres occurred through the country, many being identified as war crimes. The Armed Islamic Group (GIA) has avowed its responsibility for many of them, while for others no group has claimed responsibility. In addition to generating a widespread sense of fear, these massacres and the ensuing flight of population have resulted in serious depopulation of the worst-affected areas. The massacres peaked in 1997 (with a smaller peak in 1994), and were particularly concentrated in the areas between Algiers and Oran, with very few occurring in the east or in the Sahara.

1994–1996/1999–2009: Russia-Chechnya Wars

During the First Chechen War (1994–1996) and Second Chechen War (1999–2000 battle phase, 2000–2009 insurgency phase) there were many allegations of war crimes and terrorism against both sides from various human rights organizations.

1998–2006: Second Congo War

"The army attacks the local population as it passes through, often raping and pillaging like the militias. Those who resist are branded Mai-mai supporters and face detention or death. The Mai-mai accuse the villagers of collaborating with the army, they return to the villages at night and extract revenge. Sometimes they march the villagers into the bush to work as human mules."[230]

2003–2011: Iraq War

During the Iraq War

2006 Lebanon War

Allegations of war crimes in the 2006 Lebanon War refer to claims of various groups and individuals, including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and United Nations officials, who accused both Hezbollah and Israel of violating international humanitarian law during the 2006 Lebanon War, and warned of possible war crimes.[242] These allegations included intentional attacks on civilian populations or infrastructure, disproportionate or indiscriminate attacks in densely populated residential districts.

According to various media reports, between 1,000 and 1,200 Lebanese citizens were reported dead; there were between 1,500 and 2,500 people wounded and over 1,000,000 were temporarily displaced. Over 150 Israelis were killed (120 military); thousands wounded; and 300,000–500,000 were displaced because of Hezbollah firing tens of thousands of rockets at major cities in Israel.[243][244][245]

2003–2009/2010: Darfur conflict; 2005–2010: Civil war in Chad

During the Darfur conflict, Civil war in Chad (2005–2010) The conflict in Darfur has been variously characterized as a genocide.

Sudanese authorities claim a death toll of roughly 19,500 civilians[246] while many non-governmental organizations, such as the Coalition for International Justice, claim over 400,000 people have been killed.[247]

In September 2004, the World Health Organization estimated there had been 50,000 deaths in Darfur since the beginning of the conflict, an 18-month period, mostly due to starvation. An updated estimate the following month put the number of deaths for the 6-month period from March to October 2004 due to starvation and disease at 70,000; These figures were criticized, because they only considered short periods and did not include deaths from violence.[248] A more recent British Parliamentary Report has estimated that over 300,000 people have died,[249] and others have estimated even more.

2008–2009 Gaza War

There were allegations of war crimes by both the Israeli military and Hamas. Criticism of Israel's conduct focused on the proportionality of its measures against Hamas, and on its alleged use of weaponized white phosphorus. Numerous reports from human right groups during the war claimed that white phosphorus shells were being used by Israel, often in or near populated areas.[250][251][252] In its early statements the Israeli military denied using any form of white phosphorus, saying "We categorically deny the use of white phosphorus". It eventually admitted to its limited use and stopped using the shells, including as a smoke screen. The Goldstone report investigating possible war crimes in the 2009 war accepted that white phosphorus is not illegal under international law but did find that the Israelis were "systematically reckless in determining its use in build-up areas". It also called for serious consideration to be given to the banning of its use as an obscurant.[253]

2009 Sri Lankan Civil War

There are allegations that war crimes were committed by the Sri Lankan military and the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam during the Sri Lankan Civil War, particularly during the final months of the conflict in 2009. The alleged war crimes include attacks on civilians and civilian buildings by both sides; executions of combatants and prisoners by the government of Sri Lanka; enforced disappearances by the Sri Lankan military and paramilitary groups backed by them; acute shortages of food, medicine, and clean water for civilians trapped in the war zone; and child recruitment by the Tamil Tigers.[254][255] It is widely accused that the Secretary of Defense Gotabaya Rajapakse (brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa) ordered troops under his command to "Kill them All" when the troops on the grounds asked him for direction for handling the surrendering Tamil combatants.

A panel of experts appointed by UN Secretary-General (UNSG) Ban Ki-moon to advise him on the issue of accountability with regard to any alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law during the final stages of the civil war found "credible allegations" which, if proven, indicated that war crimes and crimes against humanity were committed by the Sri Lankan military and the Tamil Tigers.[256][257][258] The panel has called on the UNSG to conduct an independent international inquiry into the alleged violations of international law.[259][260] The Sri Lankan government has denied that its forces committed any war crimes and has strongly opposed any international investigation. It has condemned the UN report as "fundamentally flawed in many respects" and "based on patently biased material which is presented without any verification".[261]

2011–present: Syrian civil war

International organizations have accused the Syrian government, ISIL and other opposition forces of severe human rights violations, with many massacres occurring.[262][263][264][265][266] Chemical weapons have been used many times during the conflict as well.[267][268][269] The Syrian government is reportedly responsible for the majority of civilian casualties and war crimes, often through bombings.[262][264][270][271] In addition, tens of thousands of protesters and activists have been imprisoned and there are reports of torture in state prisons.[272][273][274][275]

Armed conflict Perpetrator
Syrian Civil War Syrian Government
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
Civil uprising phase of the Syrian Civil War Violent suppression of peaceful protests Crimes against peace (armed suppression of popular uprising leading to war) no prosecutions
Use of mass detention and torture of Syrian civilians and political prisoners Crime of torture, war crimes no prosecutions
Ghouta chemical attack War crimes; use of poison gas as a weapon no prosecutions The Ghouta chemical attack occurred during the Syrian Civil War in the early hours of 21 August 2013. Several opposition-controlled areas in the suburbs around Damascus, Syria, were struck by rockets containing the chemical agent sarin. Estimates of the death toll range from at least 281 people to 1,729.
2015 Douma market massacre War crimes no prosecutions The Syrian Air Force launched strikes on the rebel-held town of Douma, northeast of Damascus, killing at least 96 civilians and injuring at least 200 others.
Armed conflict Perpetrator
Syrian Civil War Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant
Incident Type of crimePersons responsibleNotes
ISIL beheading incidents Murder of neutral civilians; journalists; and aid workers Crimes against peace (murder of uninvolved parties); war crimes no prosecutions
Chemical attacks on YPG War crimes; use of poison as a weapon no prosecutions
Persecution of Yazidis by ISIL Crimes against humanity (ethnic cleansing, systematic forced conversions, crime of slaving); War crimes (Murder of Yazidi POWs); Crime of Genocide (recognized by the UN as an attempted genocide) no prosecutions

See also


  1. This list is a work in progress and is not complete.


  1. Comment by The Times, November 21, 2006 p.17, in relation to Jean-Pierre Bemba of the Congo: "There was nothing funny about his soldiers' actions in Eastern Congo... Among the crimes alleged are mass murder, rape and acts of cannibalism. Yet one senior UN diplomat has indicated privately that for the sake of peace, the investigation [by the International Criminal Court] into Bemba's responsibility may be sidelined. It isn't just in Congo that trade-offs are being made. [...] Skeptics point out that those who have stood trial so far have either been defeated in war or are retired and irrelevant. They insist there would be no chance of hauling powerful political figures in Washington and London before a court to answer for their actions..."
  2. Spencer C. Tucker; Priscilla Mary Roberts (October 25, 2005). World War I: A Student Encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO. p. 1074. ISBN 1-85109-879-8.
  3. Robinson, James J., (September 1960). "Surprise Attack: Crime at Pearl Harbor and Now" ABA Journal 46(9), p. 978.
  4. Telford Taylor (November 1, 1993). The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials: A Personal Memoir. Little, Brown and Company. ISBN 0-316-83400-9. Retrieved 20 June 2013.
  5. Thomas Graham; Damien J. Lavera (May 2003). Cornerstones of Security: Arms Control Treaties in the Nuclear Era. University of Washington Press. pp. 7–9. ISBN 0-295-98296-9. Retrieved 5 July 2013.
  6. "Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly Resolution, April 24, 1998". Retrieved 24 October 2014.
  7. Ferguson, Niall. The War of the World: Twentieth-Century Conflict and the Descent of the West. New York: Penguin Press, 2006 p. 177 ISBN 1-59420-100-5
  8. A Letter from The International Association of Genocide Scholars
  9. Kamiya, Gary.Genocide: An inconvenient truth October 16, 2007.
  10. Jaschik, Scott.Genocide Deniers.History News Network. October 10, 2007.
  11. Kifner, John.Armenian Genocide of 1915: An Overview. The New York Times.
  12. BBC News Europe (2006-10-12). "Q&A: Armenian 'genocide'". BBC News. Archived from the original on 2007-03-01. Retrieved 2009-03-05.
  13. Halpern, Paul G. (1994). A Naval History of World War I. Routledge, p. 301. ISBN 1-85728-498-4
  14. Hadley, Michael L. (1995). Count Not the Dead: The Popular Image of the German Submarine. McGill-Queen's Press – MQUP, p. 36. ISBN 0-7735-1282-9.
    R.J.Rummel, Statistics of Democide Chapter 12 Statistics of Russian Democide Estimates, Calculations, and sources
  16. An account of this attrocity, known in Ethiopia as "Yekatit 12", is contained in chapter 14 of Anthony Mockler's Haile Selassie's War (New York: Olive Branch, 2003).
  17. "Spanish Civil War". Retrieved 2009-06-24.
  18. Published: 12:01AM BST 11 Jun 2006 (2006-06-11). "A revelatory account of the Spanish civil war". London: Retrieved 2009-06-24.
  19. "Men of La Mancha". Rev. of Antony Beevor, The Battle for Spain. The Economist (22 June 2006).
  20. Julius Ruiz, "Defending the Republic: The García Atadell Brigade in Madrid, 1936". Journal of Contemporary History 42.1 (2007):97.
  21. César Vidal, Checas de Madrid: Las cárceles republicanas al descubierto. ISBN 978-84-9793-168-7
  22. "Spanish judge opens case into Franco's atrocities". New York Times. 16 October 2008. Retrieved 2009-07-28.
  23. Decision of Juzgado Central de Instruccion No. 005, Audiencia Nacional, Madrid (16 October 2008)
  24. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 Staff, Tokyo War Crimes Trial, China News Digest International section "III. The verdict"
  25. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Oct 1988. SAGE Publications. October 1988. p. 16. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  26. Laws of War: Declaration on the Use of Projectiles the Object of Which is the Diffusion of Asphyxiating or Deleterious Gases; July 29, 1899
  27. "Convention (IV) respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land and its annex: Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land. The Hague, 18 October 1907.". International Committee of the Red Cross. Retrieved July 7, 2013.
  28. "Declaration concerning the prohibition of the use of projectiles with the sole object to spread asphyxiating poisonous gases; July 29, 1899". Retrieved 24 October 2014.
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