Monday, 23 July, 2018

After Syria strikes, British PM May to face critical parliament

After Syria strikes, British PM May to face critical parliament After Syria strikes, British PM May to face critical parliament
Patty Aguilar | 17 April, 2018, 04:23

Taking aim at the Prime Minister, he added: "She could have recalled parliament last week - it is only the Prime Minister who can recall parliament - or she could have delayed until tomorrow when Parliament returns".

May has pledged a further diplomatic push to bring the Assad regime back to the negotiating table in Geneva, and ensure chemical weapons attacks are fully investigated. If Britain had waited for United Nations backing - one of Corbyn's key demands - it would have meant giving Russian Federation a "veto on our foreign policy", May said, pushing back on the opposition leader's statement that the attacks were "legally questionable".

British Prime Minister Theresa May, facing a rowdy session of parliament on Monday, defended her decision to join US -led missile strikes against Syria without first seeking parliament's authorization.

The Prime Minister dismissed claims from Labour MPs that she was acting on the "whims" of US President Donald Trump in launching the attacks, branding the suggestions as "insulting". "And it was a decision that required the evaluation of intelligence and information, much of which was of a nature that could not be shared with parliament".

"I'm absolutely clear that it is parliament's responsibility to hold me to account for such decisions and parliament will do so", she told the House of Commons in a rowdy session that laid bare divisions over the military action.

This is despite 61 percent of people surveyed believing President Assad's government or its allies were probably behind a chemical attack in the city of Douma.

She said that while the attack was "limited and targeted" further action was a possibility. "And we can not wait to alleviate further humanitarian suffering caused by chemical weapons attacks".

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A summary of the advice given by attorney-general Jeremy Wright to the Prime Minister was released by Downing Street.

Corbyn also reiterated his view that it was not yet confirmed that the Assad regime launched the attack, and said inspectors from the Hague-based Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) should be "allowed to do their work".

The document added: "In these circumstances, and as an exceptional measure on grounds of overwhelming humanitarian necessity, military intervention to strike carefully considered, specifically identified targets in order effectively to alleviate humanitarian distress by degrading the Syrian regime's chemical weapons capability and deterring further chemical weapons attacks was necessary and proportionate and therefore legally justifiable".

Legally, the British prime minister was not obliged to consult Parliament before ordering the military action, but the recent convention has been to do. "There is no more serious issue than the life and death matters of military action".

The Lib Dem leader, Vince Cable, said he regretted that the prime minister had not sought parliament's approval, but hinted his party would have given its backing, calling some of her arguments compelling.

The strikes, carried out alongside the United States, mark May's first major military action since coming to power nearly two years ago.

Vince Cable, leading the Liberal Democrats, said that the PM's failure to consult the parliament was a mistake.

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