The Islamic Resistance in Iraq (IRI), a coalition of Iranian-backed armed factions, has carried out another wave of attacks against United States bases in the country and neighboring Syria.
On November 22, two attacks, each with a single suicide drone, targeted al-Harir Air Base in the Erbil province of the northern Iraqi autonomous region of Kurdistan.
A third attack with a suicide drone targeted a U.S. base located right next to Erbil International Airport on November 23. On the same day, a rocket attack targeted the Conoco gas plant in the eastern Syrian province of Deir Ezzor, where the U.S. maintains a so-called Mission Support Site.
The IRI said in separate statements that the attacks were carried out “in response to the crimes committed by the enemy [Israel] against people in Gaza.”
The attacks came following a series of U.S. strikes that hit Iraq on November 21 and 22, killing nine fighters of the IRI, most of them were reportedly members of the Kata’ib Hezbollah. The Pentagon said that the strikes were a retaliation to recent attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria.
More U.S. strikes were reported by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on November 23 after the last wave of attacks. The London-based monitoring group said that the strikes targeted positions of Iranian-backed forces in Deir Ezzor.
The IRI formed a special operations room to support Palestinian armed factions in Gaza and began launching attacks against U.S. forces in Iraq and neighboring Syria following the October 17 Al-Ahli Arab Hospital massacre. Since then, around 70 attacks have targeted U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria.
The U.S. retaliatory strikes and its continuous support to the Israel war on Gaza will likely lead to more escalation against its forces in Iraq and Syria. The IRI has already begun using heavy precision-guided weapons like short-range ballistic missiles.