Published: Sat, April 14, 2018
Business | By Kate Woods

UK's Theresa May says Syria chemical weapons can't go unchallenged

UK's Theresa May says Syria chemical weapons can't go unchallenged

Russian Federation has warned the West against attacking its Syrian ally President Bashar al-Assad, who is also supported by Iran, and says there is no evidence of a chemical attack in Douma, a town near Damascus which had been rebel-held until this month.

"And we will be working with our closest allies on how we can ensure that those who are responsible are held to account and how we can prevent and deter the humanitarian catastrophe that comes from the use of chemical weapons in the future".

A statement from Downing Street added: "They agreed to keep working closely together on the worldwide response".

May has not confirmed whether Britain will participate directly, but said "the continued use of chemical weapons can not go unchallenged".

So far, the United Kingdom has been launching air strikes in Syria from its military base in Cyprus, but only against targets linked to the Islamic State terrorist group.

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May has not reached a final decision on whether Britain would join any strikes by the United States and France in response to a suspected chemical attack, but wants to be able to act swiftly, the newspaper said.

Syria's been fighting civil war for over seven years.

Informed sources said May is prepared to take action against the Assad regime without first seeking Parliamentary consent.

Corbyn has also evoked memories of the Iraq War, when lawmakers approved joining in the face of strong public opposition.

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A YouGov poll in The Times conducted this week found that 43 percent of voters oppose strikes in Syria, with 34 percent unsure and only 22 percent supportive.

Parliament voted down British military action against Assad's government in 2013, in an embarrassment for May's predecessor, David Cameron.

She told her senior ministers on Thursday the Douma events showed a "deeply concerning" erosion of global legal norms barring the use of chemical weapons.

Another Conservative MP, former London mayoral candidate Zac Goldsmith, tweeted: "We need a clear response to the Syrian chemical outrage".

"What we've got here in Syria is a choice between monsters on the one hand and maniacs on the other", Julian Lewis, the chairman of the House of Commons defence committee, told the BBC.

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