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Updated January 31st, 2024 at 15:54 IST

Joe Biden says he has Decided How US Will Respond to the Drone Attack

He also emphasised his reluctance to escalate tensions in the Middle East, asserting, "I don't think we need a wider war".

Sagar Kar
US
US President Joe Biden | Image:AP
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In the aftermath of a drone strike in Jordan that claimed the lives of three American soldiers and left dozens injured, President Joe Biden has confirmed that he has made a decision on how the United States will respond to the attack. The Iran-backed militia, Kataib Hezbollah, which Washington holds responsible for the strike, has announced a suspension of all its military operations against U.S. troops in the region.

President Biden expressed his belief that Iran bears responsibility for the attack due to its supply of weapons to Kataib Hezbollah. When asked about a direct link to Iran in the recent incident, Biden acknowledged ongoing discussions, stating, "we'll have that discussion." However, he emphasized his reluctance to escalate tensions in the Middle East, asserting, "I don't think we need a wider war in the Middle East. That's not what I'm looking for."

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A look at Biden's aim

In response to the drone strike, Kataib Hezbollah declared the suspension of its anti-U.S. military operations, citing a desire to prevent "embarrassment" to the Iraqi government. The Biden administration is carefully navigating its response, aiming to deter further attacks, satisfy public opinion, and avoid sparking a direct conflict with Iran. Most military analysts suggest that a direct retaliation on Iranian territory is unlikely due to the risk of escalation.

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What kind of response should we expect?

John Kirby, the White House national security spokesperson, hinted at a tiered approach to the U.S. response, stating, "It's fair for you to expect that we will respond in an appropriate fashion, and it is very possible that what you'll see is a tiered approach here, not just a single action, but essentially multiple actions."

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As the U.S. formulates its response, Tehran denies any involvement in the Jordan drone attack, rejecting accusations of supporting militant groups responsible for numerous strikes on U.S. bases since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war in October 2023. The international community watches closely as the Biden administration balances the need for a robust response with the imperative to avoid further escalation in the region.

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Published January 31st, 2024 at 15:54 IST

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