Defense Secy says U.S. will ‘respond accordingly’ to Iraq missile strike

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Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks during a visit by US President Joe Biden to the Pentagon in Washington, DC, February 10, 2021. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks during a visit by US President Joe Biden to the Pentagon in Washington, DC, February 10, 2021. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

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UPDATED 7:40 PM PT – Sunday, March 7, 2021

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the U.S. will retaliate accordingly to the recent Iraqi rocket attacks. In an interview Sunday, Austin discussed the recent attack on a base that was holding U.S. troops in Iraq’s Anbar Province, which led to the death of a U.S. contractor.

An empty tent is pictured at a displaced persons camp in Habbaniyah in Iraq's Anbar province on November 10, 2020. - After five years hosting displaced Iraqis, the vast camp was emptied in under 48 hours. The Habbaniyah Tourist Camp, a former luxury resort used to house Iraqis fleeing the Islamic State group, closed this week as part of a sudden government push to shutter dozens of displacement camps by the end of the year. (Photo by AHMAD AL-RUBAYE / AFP) (Photo by AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP via Getty Images)

An empty tent is pictured at a displaced persons camp in Habbaniyah in Iraq’s Anbar province on November 10, 2020. (Photo by AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP via Getty Images)

 

Although officials were still gathering information, Austin said the U.S. was aware of who was responsible for the attack and plans to hold them accountable for their actions. Additionally, the U.S. accused Iran of endorsing the missile strike.

“The message to those that would carry out such an attack is: Expect us to do what’s necessary to defend ourselves,” Austin noted. “We’ll strike, if that’s what we think we need to do, at a time and place of our own choosing.”

Reports said the same base was targeted in 2020 by a missile strike from Iran.

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