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

Syria air strikes: Theresa May faces MPs' questions

Syria air strikes: Theresa May faces MPs' questions

Also Monday, British Prime Minister Theresa May was to face angry lawmakers for authorizing the strikes without a vote in Parliament.

The White House is weighing new sanctions against Russian Federation "in the near future" over Moscow's support for Syria's suspected chemical attack on a Damascus suburb that activists claim killed at least 40 people.

Both Russia and Iran decried what they called a violation of global law and Syria's sovereignty, but it was unclear what, if any, response they would make.

UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson re-iterated his belief that the weekend's strikes on Syria were needed: "I'm afraid the Syrian war in many ways will go on in its awful, miserable way".

This week, the Syrian regime retook full control from rebels of the Damascus suburb of eastern Ghouta, including Douma, where the alleged chemical weapons attack took place, after a two-month regime offensive.

United Kingdom prime ministers do not legally need to consult Parliament before launching military action, although they have done so since the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

She authorized the strikes without a vote in Parliament.

But it would not give MPs the chance to formally approve or reject the air strikes themselves, says the BBC's political editor, Laura Kuenssberg.

This was dismissed by cabinet minister David Lidington, who told ITV there were "no plans" to change the law.

"The American (military) knows well that going towards a wide confrontation and a big operation against the regime and the army and the allied forces in Syria could not end, and any such confrontation would inflame the entire region", Nasrallah said.

The African Union on Sunday urged the worldwide community to find a political solution to the Syrian crisis.

But the Conservatives said he knew "full well" that Russian Federation would veto such a move.

Mrs May spoke in Downing Street in the hours after the blitz and insisted the action was a limited and targeted strike to degrade and deter the Syrian government.

The intervention "is not going to turn the tide of the conflict", he said, adding that it was about stopping the erosion of the "taboo" of chemical weapons.

Four Royal Air Force Tornado GR4s joined the co-ordinated missile strikes at 2am on Saturday, launching Storm Shadow missiles at a base 15 miles west of Homs.

"The alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria can not be a justification for military airstrikes in a territory of a sovereign state without the authorisation of the UNSC".

The MoD added the facility was located "some distance" from "concentrations of civilian habitation", and the risk of contamination to the surrounding area had been minimised.

Her office said she planned to tell them the strikes were "in Britain's national interest" and were carried out to stop further suffering from chemical weapons attacks.

On Saturday, the UN Security Council rejected a resolution drafted by Russian Federation, while all North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies have given the military action their full support.

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