US, UK and France launch military strikes on Syria
US, UK and France launch military strikes on Syria
Theresa May to face MPs over lack of vote before military action in Syria
15 April, 2018, 21:49
U.S., French and British missile attacks struck at the heart of Syria's chemical weapons program Saturday in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack a week ago, although the restrained assault appeared unlikely to halt Syrian President Bashar Assad's progress in the seven-year-old civil war.
She stated the airstrike was "limited and targeted" created to minimize civilian casualties and bring down the chemical weapon capability in Syria, Reuters reported.
"I believe that the action taken will have significantly degraded the Syrian regime's ability to use chemical weapons", she said.
Corbyn later wrote to May seeking assurance that there would be no further bombing raids and urged the government to negotiate a pause in the Syrian civil war. And it was not about regime change.
"It is about a limited and targeted strike that does not further escalate tensions in the region and that does everything possible to prevent civilian casualties", she said.
Asked why she had proceeded without consulting parliament, May cited operational security consideration.
In a statement, Mrs May said: "The Syrian regime has a history of using chemical weapons against its own people in the most cruel and abhorrent way".
"We can not tolerate the normalisation of the use of chemical weapons", he said in a statement.
Deploying the armed forces is a prerogative power, meaning the prime minister can launch action without backing from MPs.
"I have done so because I judge this action to be in Britain's national interest", she added.
Britain is also wary of any retaliatory action by Moscow, which May blamed for the nerve agent poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia last month.
"It was right to take the action that we have done in the timing that we have done", she said.
British Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed she had ordered United Kingdom armed forces to conduct "co-ordinated and targeted strikes to degrade the Syrian regime's chemical weapons capability and deter their use".
"Very careful scientific analysis was applied to determine where best to target the Storm Shadows to maximize the destruction of the stockpiled chemicals and to minimize any risks of contamination to the surrounding area", the MoD said in a statement.
"We don't expect that we'll be a position where we're having to make further strikes", he told LBC radio.
"We can not allow the use of chemical weapons to become normalised - either within Syria, on the streets of the United Kingdom or elsewhere", May told reporters in Downing Street.
Parliament is not due to reconvene until Monday, following its Easter recess.
All will be mindful of how military action can backfire.
Lawmakers backed action in Iraq in 2014, and again in Syria in 2015, strictly limiting strikes in both countries to targets of the Islamic State jihadist group.
Meanwhile, Britain's main opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn described the USA -led military strikes on Syria jointly staged by three leading Western countries as a "legally questionable action", saying that the British government should "not taking instructions from Washington".
As the Conservative leader explained her rationale for the airstrikes, opposition parties claimed the attacks were legally dubious, risked escalating conflict and should have been approved by lawmakers.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also said the strikes risked "dangerous escalation".
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