Humanitarian grounds justify Syria attack, says Theresa May

May of Britain this week. Credit Niklas Halle'N  Agence France Presse — Getty Images

May of Britain this week. Credit Niklas Halle'N Agence France Presse — Getty Images

Prime Minister Theresa May said there was "no practicable alternative to the use of force" to deter the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime.

"This is not about intervening in a civil war".

The US military action in Syria was "a one time shot", US Defence Secretary James Mattis said during a Pentagon press briefing, adding that he doesn't rule out further action by the US if the Syrian government decides to mount chemical weapons attacks in the future.

French President Emmanuel Macron said the strikes had been limited so far to Syria's chemical weapons facilities.

But US Ambassador to the United Nationals Nikki Haley has said her country is "locked and loaded" to strike Syria again if more such attacks continue.

She will say: "Let me be absolutely clear: we have acted because it is in our national interest to do so".

Britain has blamed Russian Federation for the poisoning - a charge vehemently denied by Moscow which has accused London of failing to come up with evidence for its claims.

"Very careful scientific analysis was applied to determine where best to target the Storm Shadows to maximise the destruction of the stockpiled chemicals and to minimise any risks of contamination to the surrounding area".

May said while the strike was targeted at Syria, it sent a message to anyone who used chemical weapons.

The UK has begun air strikes against Syrian chemical weapons sites.

Bombing Syria was in Britain's national interest and has had strong global support, Theresa May will insist as she tells Parliament why she ordered the attack.

Former Prime Minister David Cameron lost a parliamentary vote on air strikes against Assad's forces in 2013 when 30 Conservative lawmakers voted against action, with many Britons wary of entering another conflict after intervention in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya failed to bring stability to the region.

United Nations Security Council-mandated inspectors have probed previous attacks and decided Assad's regime was responsible four times, MPs will be told.

May is not obliged to win parliament's approval before ordering military action, but a non-binding constitutional convention to do so has been established since a 2003 vote on joining the US -led invasion of Iraq.

However, Theresa May has faced sharp criticism from other politicians for the UK's role in the bombing, with Labour opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn questioning its legality.

"Bombing can not substitute for diplomacy", he said.

"It was both right and legal to take military action together with our closest allies to alleviate further humanitarian suffering by degrading the Syrian regime's chemical weapons capability", May said.

He reiterated that Canada condemns the use of chemical weapons in Ghouta.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.