US strikes Iranian-backed targets in Syria while progressing towards a nuclear deal
The military said the airstrikes against groups linked to Iran’s IRGC came in retaliation for an attack on US forces earlier this month
The United States military said it carried out airstrikes on Syrian territory on Tuesday against infrastructure used by groups connected to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The targeted facilities were located in the area of Deir ez-Zor, the largest city in the eastern part of the country.
The operation comes as the Biden administration and other world powers are getting close to finalizing a nuclear deal with Iran. Washington is currently reviewing Iran’s comments on the European Union’s draft proposal.
A statement from the U.S. Central Command reads: “At President Biden’s direction, U.S. military forces conducted precision airstrikes in Deir ez-Zor Syria today. These precision strikes are intended to defend and protect US forces from attacks like the ones on August 15 against US personnel by Iran-backed groups.”
The statement from Colonel Joe Buccino, USCENTCOM Communication director, was referring to a drone attack from last week near the Green Village base by the Syrian border with Iraq that holds U.S. personnel. The military reported no casualties.
“Today’s strikes were necessary to protect and defend U.S. personnel. The United States took proportionate, deliberate action intended to limit the risk of escalation and minimize the risk of casualties,” read the statement further. “The President gave the direction for these strikes pursuant to his Article II authority to protect and defend U.S. personnel by disrupting or deterring attacks by Iran-backed groups.”
U.S. media outlets reported that they believe there were no casualties in the strikes. NBC News quoted a military official saying that the airstrikes hit nine bunkers used for ammunition storage and logistics supply facilities.