Statement by Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III on Iran’s Strikes Against Israel

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At the direction of President Biden, U.S. forces in the Middle East on April 13 intercepted dozens of missiles and UAVs en route to Israel, launched from Iran, Iraq, Syria and Yemen. Our forces remain postured to protect U.S. troops and partners in the region, provide further support for Israel’s defense, and enhance regional stability.
 
We condemn these reckless and unprecedented attacks by Iran and its proxies, and we call on Iran to immediately halt any further attacks, including from its proxy forces, and to deescalate tensions. We do not seek conflict with Iran, but we will not hesitate to act to protect our forces and support the defense of Israel.
 
I am grateful for the professionalism and the skill of the brave U.S. troops who took part in today’s actions and who continue to stand guard to prevent further conflict or escalation. I will continue to monitor the situation closely and to consult with our allies and partners.

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