The United States on Friday launched retaliatory airstrikes against Iranian-backed militias in Iraq and Syria, about a week after a drone attack killed three U.S. troops at a remote base in Jordan.

U.S. Central Command said more than 85 targets associated with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Quds Force and militias were hit with over 125 precision munitions.

It said the targets the military struck using various aircraft included command and control headquarters, intelligence centers, rockets, missiles and unmanned aerial vehicle storage areas.

U.S. President Joe Biden (L, back) pays his respects as a U.S. Army carry team moves a flagged draped transfer case containing the remains of an Army sergeant at Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Delaware, on Feb. 2, 2024. (Getty/Kyodo)

"Our response began today. It will continue at times and places of our choosing," U.S. President Joe Biden said in a statement.

Biden added, "The United States does not seek conflict in the Middle East or anywhere else in the world. But let all those who might seek to do us harm know this: If you harm an American, we will respond."

According to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, seven facilities the Iranian force and its proxies used to attack the U.S. military were struck.

Of the seven, three were in Iraq and four were in Syria, Lt. Gen. Douglas Sims, director of the Joint Staff, said in a hastily arranged press briefing.

The strikes carried out by B-1 bombers flown from the United States and other aircraft lasted about 30 minutes, according to John Kirby, the White House national security spokesman.

The drone attack near the Syrian border on Sunday was the first deadly strike against U.S. forces since the war between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas erupted in October.

The United States had warned of impending retaliatory strikes against the Iranian-backed militants after the attack, in which more than 40 service members were also injured.

Kirby stressed that the targets were "carefully selected to avoid civilian casualties and based on clear, irrefutable evidence that they were connected to attacks on U.S. personnel in the region."

"The Department of Defense is in the early stages of battle damage assessment, but we believe that the strikes were successful," Kirby told reporters. "We do not know at this time if or how many militants may have been killed or wounded."

The strikes were carried out amid rising concern that the United States could be drawn into a broader regional conflict and with Biden facing low approval ratings ahead of the presidential election due in November.

Kirby reiterated Washington's position that it is not looking for "war with Iran." He also said the United States informed the Iraqi government before carrying out the strikes.

The strikes were announced just hours after the U.S. president, who is seeking reelection in 2024, and first lady Jill Biden joined Austin at a military ritual at an air base in Delaware for the return of the three soldiers' bodies.