On Sunday evening, the United States carried out airstrikes against what it says were the structures used by two groups of militias backed by Iran on the border between Syria and Iraq.
John Kirby, the Pentagon’s press secretary, said operational and weapons storage facilities were intended, two in Syria and one in Iraq, which were used to launch drone attacks against troops and structures Americans.
The facilities were used by many supporters from Iran militias included Hezbollah’s Kata’ib and Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada, Kirby said in a statement.
He added that the air strikes were “defensive” and a response to an “ongoing series of attacks by Iran-backed groups targeting US interests in Iraq.”
“The United States has taken necessary, appropriate, and deliberate actions aimed at limiting the risk of escalation – but also to send a clear and unambiguous deterrent message,” Kirby said.
The strikes marked the second time President Joe Biden has ordered the use of force in the region, after the United States he made airstrikes against militias backed by Iran in Syria in late February.
The strikes came just over a week after the crash electoral victory in Iran of the conservative cleric and chief justice Ebrahim Raisi, who gave the kingdom’s rulers control of all branches of the Iranian state for the first time in nearly a decade.
Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives, said that “protecting military heroes defending our freedoms is a sacred priority.”
He added: “Congress looks forward to receiving and reviewing the formal notification of this operation under the Powers of War Act and to receiving additional information from the administration.”
The Biden administration is looking returned to the 2015 nuclear pact with Iran and has launched several cycles of indirect negotiations in Vienna, which have yet to make any progress.
Tehran has repeatedly asked Washington lift sanctions before agreeing to halt its nuclear program. Since the Trump administration withdrew from the agreement, Iran has violated the limits of its nuclear production, causing concerns to the UN nuclear field.
Biden has promised to renounce the nuclear deal if Tehran returns to the full deal. But his administration is under pressure from U.S. politicians, Israel and Washington’s Arab partners to take a hard line on Iran’s support for regional militias and its missile program.