Washington, Feb 2 (EFE).-
The United States said Friday it bombed more than 85 targets and facilities linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard and pro-Iranian groups in Iraq and Syria in response to last week’s attack that killed three US soldiers.
At least 18 members of pro-Iranian militias were killed by the US bombing raids on different points in Syria and Iraq, an Iraqi military source and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported.On the Syrian side, the airstrikes killed 13 militiamen and destroyed 17 positions of Tehran-backed armed groups in the eastern province of Deir al-Zur, according to a statement by the Britain-based Observatory, which has an extensive network of partners on the ground.
The US Army Central Command (Centcom) said the airstrike took place at 4 pm Washington time and involved more than 125 precision-guided munitions.
The US was responding to Sunday’s drone attack in Jordan, near the Syrian border, carried out by pro-Iranian militias that killed three US soldiers and wounded 40 others.
“US military forces struck more than 85 targets, with numerous aircraft to include long-range bombers flown from the United States,” Centcom said.
President Joe Biden warned Friday that his country’s response to the attack will continue as Washington deems necessary.
“Our response began today. It will continue at times and places of our choosing,” he said in a statement released by the White House shortly after it was reported that targets of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and affiliated groups in Syria and Iraq had been bombed.
According to the military, the targets included operations centers, intelligence centers, missile and rocket sites, drone storage facilities, and logistics facilities related to the various attacks by pro-Iranian groups against US forces in recent weeks.
Since the start of the Gaza war in October, these armed groups have carried out dozens of actions against US targets in Iraq and Syria, but until Sunday, none of them had resulted in fatalities.
Washington promised a response to what had happened, but throughout the week officials offered no details on how, where, or when it would take place.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin warned Thursday, however, that retaliation could be “multi-tiered.”
“We will have a multi-tiered response, and … we have the ability to respond a number of times depending on what the situation is,” Austin said.
The attack was claimed by the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, and the Pentagon says there are indications that it was orchestrated by Kataib Hezbollah, the most powerful pro-Iranian militia in Iraq and the flagship of the resistance.
Washington, however, ultimately blames Iran, even though the islamic republic distanced itself from the attack. EFE