Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
People | By Neil Grant

After Syria strikes, May to face critical parliament

After Syria strikes, May to face critical parliament

British Prime Minister Theresa May has told restive MPs that military air strikes against Syria were right both legally and morally, and accused Syria and its ally Russian Federation of attempting to cover up evidence of a deadly chemical weapons attack.

May, who has regained confidence after winning support for her tough stance on Syria and Russian Federation, said she was driven by the need to decide quickly on joining the United States and France in Saturday's strikes, made in retaliation for a suspected gas attack.

The British government is not legally bound to seek Parliament's approval for military strikes, although it is customary to do so, and many lawmakers expressed anger that they were not consulted.

May has been criticized for making the decision without consulting parliament.

Ms May faced down her domestic critics as France's Prime Minister defended the "proportionate" response to the use of chemical weapons.

May has weathered months of doubt over her leadership due to rows over Brexit and an ill-judged decision to call an early election when her Conservative Party lost its parliamentary majority.

Now, she is enjoying an unusual spell of global support for her action in Syria and her stance against Moscow over a nerve agent attack on a former Russian spy in Britain.

The British government apologised today for its "appalling" treatment of some immigrants from the Caribbean, as reports of law-abiding residents being threatened with deportation overshadowed a London meeting of leaders from the 53-nation Commonwealth.

"It was perfectly possible for the house to have been recalled in advance". Oddly, less has been made of the fact that the strikes were specifically against a military facility that had, according to available intelligence, manufactured the chemical weapons used on civilians in Douma.

May told the House of Commons on Monday that the British government has the right to act quickly in the national interest. We have also reminded him of the commitments he gave British Sikhs in a meeting during his previous visit to address longstanding grievances of Sikhs community in the United Kingdom and across the world with India.

Corbyn said May should remember she "is accountable to this Parliament, not to the whims of the USA president".

The joint statement comes amid worsening relations between the two countries and Moscow, after Washington and London launched coordinated strikes against Russia's ally Syria.

In Luxembourg, the foreign ministers of the 28 European Union countries called for a political breakthrough involving regional players to put Syria on track to a peaceful solution for its seven-year conflict.

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