U.S. Military Conducts Airstrikes on Syrian Targets

The United States military has conducted airstrikes on Feb. 24, targeting multiple facilities used by Iran-backed militant groups in eastern Syria, the U.S. Department of Defense said in a statement.

According to the department, President Joe Biden directed and authorized the strike “in response to recent attacks against American and Coalition personnel in Iraq, and to ongoing threats to those personnel,” referring to the rocket attack in Iraq last Feb. 15 that killed one civilian contractor and injured a U.S. service member and five other contractors.

The department named Kait’ib Hezbollah and Kait’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada as two of the Iran-backed militant groups using the targeted facilities.

“We’re confident that that target was being used by the same Shia militants that conducted the strikes,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told reporters.

“We said a number of times that we will respond on our timeline. We wanted to be sure of the connectivity and we wanted to be sure that we had the right targets,” Austin further said.

Austin also said he recommended the military action to Biden, which becomes the first under the current administration.

“The operation sends an unambiguous message: President Biden will act to protect American and 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 defense department stated, describing the strike as a “proportionate military response.”


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