US Launches Airstrikes in Iraq, Syria Targeting Iran-Backed Group; Mark Esper Comments

Mark Esper
Mark Esper

The U.S. has facilitated airstrikes on five facilities in Iraq and Syria that were linked to an Iranian-backed militia, CNN reported Monday.

U.S. forces used F-15 fighter jets for the attack and targeted three locations in Iraq as well as two in Syria. The facilities involved with the Kataib Hezbollah group include command-and-control facilities and weapon storage locations.

Kataib Hezbollah reportedly conducted attacks on military facilities operated by joint U.S.-Iraq forces. There were at least 25 fatalities in the recent U.S.-led airstrikes, according to the report.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper, a 2019 Wash100 Award recipient, said he met with President Trump, Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to discuss the airstrikes.

Esper noted that the meeting sought to ensure that the U.S. would “take additional actions as necessary to ensure that we act in our own self-defense and we deter further bad behavior from militia groups or from Iran."

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