UK's May 'ready to approve' Syria strikes

UK's May 'ready to approve' Syria strikes
Prime Minister Theresa May is not expected to seek parliamentary approval in order to swiftly join any potential US strike on Syria.
2 min read
11 April, 2018
Theresa May at a press conference in Stockholm [Getty]
British submarines were ordered on Wednesday to move within missile range of Syria to be able to act swiftly if a decision is reached to launch air strikes, The Daily Telegraph reported.

British Prime Minister Theresa May is reportedly ready to approve the UK's participation in a miltary response to the Syrian regime's suspected use of chemical weapons on Saturday that left as many as 60 dead.

May would not seek parliamentary approval before deciding on air strikes, the BBC reported, but called for a cabinet meeting on Thursday to update ministers on a "fast-moving week".

Earlier in the day, May said all indications pointed to the Syrian regime as using chemical weapons in Douma, the largest town in the formerly rebel-held Eastern Ghouta enclave. 

May added that such attacks could not go unanswered.

On Wednesday, US President Donald Trump warned Russia of an imminent attack in Syria and tweeted that "missiles will be coming". He also described the US' relationship with Russia as "worse now than it has ever been".

UK opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn, the left-wing Labour party head, called on May to seek parliamentary approval for any military action in Syria. 

Recent convention has been for UK leaders to seek parliamentary approval before military action is launched overseas. In 2003, Prime Minister Tony Blair won parliamentary approval to go to war in Iraq.

The Syrian regime has consistently denied using chemical weapons in Syria's seven-year-long war and questioned whether Saturday's attack took place. Regime-ally Russia has also called the reports "provocations" and "fake news".

However, a recent Human Rights Watch report found the Syrian regime responsible for the majority of 85 chemical weapons attacks between 21 August, 2013 and 25 February, 2018.

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