U.S. forces launched a round of airstrikes in Iraq early Wednesday against two facilities used by Iran and Iranian-backed groups that have engaged in attacks against U.S. forces stationed in Iraq, the second U.S. attack in about a day, according to U.S. Central Command. .
US Central Command confirmed that its forces carried out “separate and precise strikes” against two facilities in Iraq in response to an attack against US forces on Tuesday.
The strikes were in direct response to attacks against US and coalition forces by Iran and Iranian-backed groups, including an attack in Iraq on November 21, which included the use of close-range ballistic missiles. he wrote in a statement.
On Tuesday, Iranian-backed militias carried out an attack using a close-range ballistic missile against US and coalition forces at Al-Asad Air Base in Iraq, Pentagon Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh said on Tuesday. He told reporters Before the second round of strikes on Wednesday morning.
Singh said the attack resulted in several non-serious injuries and some minor damage to infrastructure.
Immediately after the attack on Tuesday, an American AC-130 military plane went down The attack was carried out in self-defense Against a vehicle belonging to the Iranian-backed militia and a number of individuals believed to be involved in the attack.
Singh confirmed that the American strike resulted in “some” deaths among enemy elements, but he did not confirm the exact number.
When asked why the US was targeting people instead of infrastructure or weapons storage, Singh said the AC-130 was able to pinpoint the point of origin from which the missile was launched, and as a result, US forces were able to track the militants’ locations. a movement. She added that the AC-130 was already in the air, allowing for a quick response time.
“They were able to move because they saw the militants,” Singh said. “They were able to monitor the movement of these militants as they moved to their cars and that is why they were able to respond.”
Tuesday’s incident represents the latest in a series of increasing attacks against US forces and assets in the Middle East. US forces have been attacked about 66 times since October 17, including 32 separate times in Iraq and 34 separate times in Syria, according to Singh.
Since the beginning of the attacks, the United States has launched three other strikes, all of which were planned in advance and targeted specific facilities and infrastructure known to be used by militias associated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Singh noted.
“We are very confident that the targets that we have selected, first, we know that Iran supports, supports, arms, equips and financially supports these groups and those affiliated with the IRGC — sorry, their sites and affiliates,” Singh said. “So we hit them where it hurts.”
The surge in attacks believed to be from Iranian-backed proxies began shortly after war broke out between Israel and the militant group Hamas following the group’s surprise incursion into Israel that left more than 1,200 people dead, including hundreds of civilians.
Israel has launched a campaign to destroy Hamas, also backed by Iran, bombing Hamas-ruled Gaza with air strikes, bombings and ground attacks in the northern part of the Strip. More than 11,000 Palestinians have been killed in the conflict over the past six weeks. According to the Hamas-run Ministry of Health in Gaza.
Increased activity in the Middle East has raised fears that Iran and its proxies will seek to expand the conflict and destabilize the region.
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