2015 saw fewest IDF soldiers’ deaths in a decade

Figure plunges to 36 over a year without major operations; most fall to suicide, illness and car accidents

Illustration. IDF recruits. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit/Flickr)
Illustration. IDF recruits. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit/Flickr)

Thirty-six Israeli soldiers died in 2015, according to an IDF Manpower Directorate report released Sunday, making it the lowest toll the IDF has experienced in a decade.

Although Israel is in the midst of an ongoing wave of terror which has killed approximately 25 citizens and injured dozens more, there were no large military operations in 2015, and this fact was cited by a military official as one of the reasons for the low death toll.

Six soldiers were killed in terror attacks and in operative activity. Six others died of illness and seven more soldiers were killed in traffic collisions while on leave.

Fifteen of the soldiers who died in 2015 were suspected suicides, the same number as in 2014. The lowest-ever number of IDF suicides was reported in 2013, when there were seven such deaths reported.

When the 2013 statistics were published, the number of military suicides had been on a steady decline since 2010. IDF officials also said that most of those suicides were unrelated to the soldiers’ military service.

In 2014, the year of the Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, the Ynet news site reported 105 dead soldiers, with 67 of them killed during the operation.

According to the military official, 2015 was the third year in a row in which no soldiers were killed in training accidents.

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