US conducts airstrikes against Iran-backed militia groups on Iraq-Syria border
The U.S. on Sunday conducted air strikes on facilities along the Iraq-Syria border used by Iran-backed militia groups, the Pentagon announced.
“At President Biden’s direction, U.S. military forces earlier this evening conducted defensive precision airstrikes against facilities used by Iran-backed militia groups in the Iraq-Syria border region,” the Pentagon said in a statement.
The Pentagon said the strikes targeted operational and weapons storage facilities which Iran-backed militia groups Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH) and Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (KSS) used to engage in unmanned aerial vehicle attacks against U.S. troops in Iraq.
“As demonstrated by this evening’s strikes, President Biden has been clear that he will act to protect U.S. personnel. Given the ongoing series of attacks by Iran-backed groups targeting U.S. interests in Iraq, the President directed further military action to disrupt and deter such attacks,” the Pentagon said.
The Defense Department added the U.S. is in Iraq for the purpose of assisting Iraqi forces in their fight against the Islamic State (ISIS), saying that they sent a clear message with their attack.
“The strikes were both necessary to address the threat and appropriately limited in scope. As a matter of domestic law, the President took this action pursuant to his Article II authority to protect U.S. personnel in Iraq.”
The announcement comes as lawmakers consider repealing the authorizations for the use of military force (AUMF) related to Iraq.