This dataset includes statistics for battle deaths (soldiers and civilians killed in combat) in state-based armed conflicts. The PRIO Battle Deaths Dataset dataset defines battle deaths as deaths resulting directly from violence inflicted through the use of armed force by a party to an armed conflict during contested combat. Contested combat is use of armed force by a party to an armed conflict against any person or target during which the perpetrator faces the immediate threat of lethal force being used by another party to the conflict against him/her and/or allied fighters. Contested combat excludes the sustained destruction of soldiers or civilians outside of the context of any reciprocal threat of lethal force (e.g. execution of prisoners of war).