The United States on Thursday attacked two sites in eastern Syria which the Pentagon said were being used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

The strikes were carried out by two F-16s and targeted weapons and ammunition storage facilities, a senior military official told reporters in Washington.

It follows a spate of attacks on American forces in Iraq and Syria and comes amid fears of escalating conflict in the Middle East as Israel prepares a ground assault on Hamas in Gaza.

The strikes were ordered by President Joe Biden and were in “self-defence”, the Pentagon said.

“These precision self-defence strikes are a response to a series of ongoing and mostly unsuccessful attacks against US personnel in Iraq and Syria by Iranian-backed militia groups that began on October 17,” said Lloyd Austin, the Defence Secretary.

Mr Austin said Mr Biden directed the strikes “to make clear that the United States will not tolerate such attacks and will defend itself, its personnel, and its interests”. 

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