Incident Summary:

12/16/2016: Assailants attacked an evacuation bus convoy and abducted 800 people in Aleppo city, Syria. At least four people were killed and the remaining 796 hostages were released later the same day. No group claimed responsibility; however, sources attributed the attack to Hezbollah.




Middle East & North Africa

region/u.s. state:



Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Armed Assault
Type of Attack (more) Hostage Taking (Kidnapping)
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Transportation
Name of Entity Unknown
Specific Description Evacuation Bus Convoy
Nationality of Target Syria
Additional Information
Hostages Yes
Number of Hostages 800
US Hostages 0
Outcome Combination
Ransom No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Minor (likely < $1 million)
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Firearms Unknown Gun Type
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) Yes
Alternate Designation (more) State Actors
Additional Information There is doubt that this incident meets terrorism-related criteria. It was unclear whether the assailants were working in conjunction with the Syrian military. Casualty numbers conflict across sources. Following GTD protocol, the lowest reliable estimates are reported here.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Hezbollah No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators Unknown
Number of Captured Perpetrators 0
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 4 Fatalities
Total Number of Fatalities 4
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured Unknown
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
"50,000 people remain trapped in freezing Aleppo; Russia claims a successful evacuation but the UN says families are stuck and at the mercy of the militias," The Daily Telegraph (London), December 17, 2016.
"Pro-regime terrorists free civilian hostages near Aleppo," Anadolu Ajansi, December 16, 2016.