The airstrike was issued during the night until Friday and was aimed at several facilities at a border checkpoint in eastern Syria.

According to the US Department of Defense, the attack was aimed at, among others, the Iranian-backed militia groups Kata'ib Hezbollah and Kata'ib Sayyid al Shuhada, reports Reuters.

- We know that we met the right goal.

We know we met them, and we'm sure these facilities were used by the same Shiite militia groups that issued the attacks.

It was my recommendation to attack and we will continue to respond according to schedule, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told reporters in Washington, DC.

Biden's first ordered attack

At least 17 militiamen have been killed in the attacks, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), which monitors fighting in Syria from Britain.

The attack comes in response to the rocket attack on a US-Kurdish military base in Iraq on February 15, when a US military official was killed.

The attack on militia groups in eastern Syria is the first known one carried out by US forces since Joe Biden took office in the United States, according to CNN.