The United States launched late Thursday airstrikes in Syria against facilities that were being used by Iranian-backed militia.
The airstrikes were in retaliation for a rocket attack earlier in February in Iraq, in which a civilian contractor was killed and a US service member was wounded, as well as and other coalition troops.
“At President Biden’s direction, U.S. military forces earlier this evening conducted airstrikes against infrastructure utilized by Iranian-backed militant groups in eastern Syria,” Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said.
According to Kirby, “the strikes were authorized in response to recent attacks against American and Coalition personnel in Iraq, and to ongoing threats to those personnel.”
Kirby said the airstrikes destroyed multiple facilities located at a border control point used by a number of Iranian-backed militant groups, including Kait’ib Hezbollah (KH) and Kait’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (KSS).
Kirby said that the airstrikes were conducted “together with diplomatic measures, including consultation with Coalition partners.”
“The operation sends an unambiguous message: President Biden will act to protect American and Coalition personnel,” Kirby said, adding that, “At the same time, we have acted in a deliberate manner that aims to de-escalate the overall situation in both eastern Syria and Iraq.”