An Iran-backed militant group in Iraq has promised to continue attacks on U.S. troops after three American soldiers were killed by a drone strike in Jordan on Sunday.
In a statement released Friday, Harakat al-Nujaba, one of the strongest Iraqi militias, announced that it plans to continue military operations against U.S. forces while allied factions have backed off their attacks after the Biden administration said there will be retaliation.
Akram al-Kaabi, the group’s leader, called for an end to the Israeli military operations in Gaza and withdrawal of the “American occupation of Iraq,” in a statement posted on X.
The announcement comes after Kataib Hezbollah, another powerful Iranian-backed Iraqi militia, which is closely monitored by the U.S. government, said on Tuesday that it would “suspend military and security operations against the occupying forces” to avoid embarrassing the Iraqi government.
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Al-Nujaba, which emerged from the larger Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq militia in 2013, has fought both opposition forces in Syria and the Islamic State militant group in Iraq.
The Islamic Resistance in Iraq, a coalition of Iranian-backed militias that the U.S. has blamed for the deadly attack in Jordan, has launched more than 160 attacks on bases hosting U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria since October 7, amid tensions over U.S. support for Israel in the ongoing war in Gaza.
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The White House has repeatedly stated there will be a response to the killing of three American soldiers in Jordan.
White House national security spokesman John Kirby said Wednesday the response will come “on our own time, on our own schedule,” and that “the first thing you see won’t be the last.”
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The Pentagon identified those killed in the attack as Sgt. William Jerome Rivers, 46, of Carrollton, Georgia; Spc. Kennedy Ladon Sanders, 24, of Waycross, Georgia; and Spc. Breonna Alexsondria Moffett, 23, of Savannah, Georgia. The Army Reserve announced on Tuesday that it had posthumously promoted Sanders and Moffett to the rank of sergeant.
In addition to those killed, at least 34 service members were injured, including at least eight personnel whose injuries warranted an evacuation from Jordan to higher-level care, though they were believed to be in stable condition.
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While the attack was launched by an Iran-backed militia in Iraq, President Biden’s administration had previously said that it ultimately held Iran responsible for the incident.
Kirby indicated the U.S. response will “be a response over time” and that it would not be limited to a “one-off,” though he did not elaborate.
Fox News Digital’s Anders Hagstrom, Fox News’ Liz Friden and the Associated Press contributed to this report.