US launches 3rd strikes on Iran-linked groups amid attacks on American soldiers

American aircraft on Sunday struck a weapons storage facility and a command-and-control center used by Iran-linked militants in Syria in the latest round of retaliatory strikes amid continued attacks on U.S. troops in the Middle East, officials said.

“Within the last two hours, the U.S. has taken precision defensive strikes against two sites in Syria,” one official told ABC News.

The operation was in response to what the Pentagon has called ongoing attacks, injuring dozens of American troops, by proxy fighters supported by Iran since the Israel-Hamas war began after Hamas’ terror attack last month.

The U.S. military believes.the strikes are part of a larger strategy of deterrence intended to keep other groups from escalating conflict in the region, where tensions have been sharply inflamed by the fighting between Israel and Hamas.

“The President has no higher priority than the safety of U.S. personnel, and he directed today’s action to make clear that the United States will defend itself, its personnel, and its interests,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in a statement on Sunday.