Economy

Attacks on Syria: Theresa May defends launching missile strikes

Attacks on Syria: Theresa May defends launching missile strikes

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

"We still stand by a diplomatic solution to the conflict in Syria", they added in the statement released by Germany on Tuesday.

May, who has regained confidence after winning support for her tough stance on Syria and Russian Federation, will make a statement to parliament on her decision to join the United States and France in Saturday's strikes in retaliation for a suspected gas attack.

"What we need in this country is something more robust, like a war powers act, so that governments do get held to account by parliament for what they do in our name", he said.

"For 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 said.

The 54-year-old general, who left the Syrian army and joined the opposition Free Syrian Army (FSA) after he said he was ordered to carry out a number of chemical attacks on civilians, has maintained contact with officials inside Syria who share intelligence with him.

It now looks as though the prime minister has headed him off at the pass, by announcing she too will be asking the Speaker for such a debate.

She will also say that "it was the right thing to do" to avert further suffering caused by chemical attacks and that "we are not alone - there is broad-based global support for the action we have taken".

"The Syrian regime has reportedly been attempting to hide the evidence by searching evacuees from Douma to ensure samples are not being smuggled from this area".

Russian state-sponsored actors were said to be using "compromised routers" to conduct spoofing "man-in-the-middle" attacks to "support espionage... and potentially lay a foundation for future offensive operations".

Ahmet Uzumcu, director-general of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, said Monday that the organization's team "has not yet deployed to Douma", two days after arriving in Syria. And if Theresa May wants to take similar action again if more horrendous events take place - when MPs are not away - she might not be able to do the same again without their backing.

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In Britain's House of Commons, much of Monday's scheduled business was scrapped for an emergency debate on the airstrikes that stretched late into the evening.

He said the government must be "accountable to this parliament and not to the whims of" US President Donald Trump.

May denied acting at the behest of the U.S.

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran, a leading supporter of the People's Vote campaign, said:"It may seem like the odds are stacked against us as a movement, but fighting for what you believe in is never easy".

That's despite the convention, and it is only a convention not a firm rule, that governments ask Parliament for its consent before taking military action. "As long as it's still functioning then they'll still have chemical weapons and the ability to produce more", he said.

Some French opposition leaders have criticized the strikes, saying they were not legitimate. "That is why so many are demanding a People's Vote on the final Brexit deal".

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.

May said the U.K.is "confident in our own assessment that the Syrian regime was highly likely responsible for this attack and that its persistent pattern of behaviour meant that it was highly likely to continue using chemical weapons".

BBC political correspondent Ben Wright said if approved it would be up to the opposition parties to decide if they wanted a vote at the end of the debate.

"There is the need to give a push to the United Nations -led process", Mogherini said.


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