US ‘not looking for conflict with Iran’ despite Houthi strikes — White House

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby speaks at a press briefing at the White House in Washington, December 13, 2023. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
National Security Council spokesman John Kirby speaks at a press briefing at the White House in Washington, December 13, 2023. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The United States does not seek conflict with Iran despite carrying out strikes on Yemen’s Tehran-backed Houthi rebels to stop their attacks on Red Sea shipping, the White House says.

“We’re not looking for conflict with Iran. We’re not looking to escalate and there’s no reason for it to escalate beyond what happened over the last few days,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby tells MSNBC.

The United States is assessing the impact of US-UK airstrikes on Houthis in Yemen, which targeted the Iran-backed militants’ ability to store, launch and guide its missiles or drones, Kirby says.

“We’re still doing the assessment of the actual impacts on all these targets. That work is ongoing. So I think we’ll have a better sense of the specifics of the damage done here in the coming hours,” Kirby says.

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