Iran-backed militias in Iraq claim responsibility for attack on US military base in Syria

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Iran-backed militias in Iraq have claimed they were responsible for an attack on U.S. forces at a strategic base in southeastern Syria.

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq, an umbrella group of Iranian-backed militias, said Monday that their forces used two drones to attack the al-Tanf garrison near the Jordanian and Iraqi borders, a sensitive location often used by Iranian-backed militants to transport weapons to Hezbollah.

Monday’s attack comes after a string of similar attacks on bases housing U.S. military in Iraq and Syria over the past week. In one, the same group attacked two bases in Iraq with drones, causing minor injuries among U.S. forces.

The U.S. military has maintained a presence at the al-Tanf garrison since training forces as part of a campaign against the Islamic State group. The U.S. currently has about 900 U.S. troops in Syria.

Two U.S. defense officials confirm to Fox News a base housing U.S. troops in Syria was attacked by drones this morning. No injuries have been reported. Pentagon Press Secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder later confirmed the attack.

Iraq has said its military will go after militants who were responsible for these attacks against army bases housing U.S. troops, Iraqi army spokesperson Maj. Gen. Yahya Rasoul said.

In a statement Monday, Rasoul said the country’s security agencies have been tasked by the country’s prime minister to go after those who carried out attacks and prevent any attempt to harm Iraq’s national security.

Rasoul also clarified that military advisers from the U.S.-led coalition are in the country ‘at the invitation of the government’ to train Iraqi forces and prevent a resurgence of the Islamic State group.

Over the past week, several bases housing U.S. troops in Iraq came under rocket and drone attacks. There are about 2,500 U.S. troops in Iraq.

U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) confirmed last week’s attacks in a statement on Thursday.

‘In the last 24 hours, the U.S. military defended against three drones near U.S. and Coalition forces in Iraq. In western Iraq, U.S. forces engaged two drones, destroying one and damaging the second, resulting in minor injuries to Coalition forces. Separately in northern Iraq, U.S. forces engaged and destroyed a drone, resulting in no injuries or damage. We are continuing to assess the impacts to operations,’ CENTCOM said.

‘In this moment of heightened alert, we are vigilantly monitoring the situation in Iraq and the region. We want to emphasize U.S. forces will defend U.S. and Coalition forces against any threat,’ they added.

The attacks in Iraq and Syria come as the United States has sought to contain a war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. The war, in its 17th day as of Monday, is the deadliest both sides have seen in Israel’s 75-year history as a country. 

Fox News’ Liz Friden, Sarah Rumpf-Whitten and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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