IslamNews -The United States launched airstrikes in Syria on Thursday, targeting facilities near the Iraqi border used by Iranian-backed militia groups.
The Pentagon said the strikes were retaliation for a rocket attack in Iraq earlier this month that killed one civilian contractor and wounded a US service member and other coalition troops.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the strikes took place “at President Biden’s direction” and were authorized not just to respond to the recent attacks against American and coalition forces but also to deal with “ongoing threats to those personnel.”
“Specifically, the strikes destroyed multiple facilities located at a border control point used by a number of Iranian-backed militant groups, including Kata’ib Hezbollah and Kata’ib Sayyid al Shuhada,” Kirby said. “The operation sends an unambiguous message; President Biden will act to protect American coalition personnel. 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.”
The site the US struck on Thursday is believed to be used as part of a weapons smuggling operation by the militias, according to a US official. The strikes were conducted to degrade the groups’ ability to carry out attacks and to send a message about the recent attacks, the official said.