Washington: The United States has conducted a self-defense airstrike in eastern Syria against a facility used by the Iran Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and affiliated groups, the White House said Thursday.
The precision strike was conducted in response to the recent attacks directed by the IRGC and affiliated groups against US and Coalition bases in Iraq and Syria, White House Deputy Press Secretary Olivia Dalton told reporters aboard the Air Force One.
“Yesterday, President (Joe) Biden directed the U.S. military to carry out a self-defense airstrike in eastern Syria against a facility used by the Iran Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and affiliated groups,” Dalton said.
She said the US conducted the strike to disrupt and degrade the freedom of action and capabilities of these groups directly responsible for attacking US forces who are in Iraq and Syria as part of the mission to defeat the ISIS.
“We are making it clear that these attacks are unacceptable and cannot continue. President Biden and the United States government are fully prepared to take further necessary measures to protect our people and our facilities. And we want to be clear that we continue to urge against any escalation,” Dalton said.
Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh told reporters at a separate news conference that these actions were taken in response to ongoing threats and attacks directed at US bases in both Syria and Iraq by the IRGC and related groups.
“The target was identified as a single-weapon storage facility used by the IRGC and the — and its related groups. U.S. Central Command conducted the strike with two F-15s. We are still conducting the assessment of the strike, but initial analysis indicated multiple secondary explosions after the strike, as we had expected,” she said.
Singh said this action was aimed at disrupting and degrading the capabilities of groups directly responsible for attacking US forces in the region.
By specifically targeting these associated facilities, the US seeks to convey a clear message to Iran that it will be held accountable for the attacks on U.S. forces, she said. The US expects Iran to take measures to direct its proxies to stop, she said.
“Our military actions do not signal a change in our approach to the Israel-Hamas conflict and we have no intentions of escalating this conflict in the region. Our commitment to self-defense and the protection of U.S. personnel remains the same,” Singh said.