17 July 2018

UK Labour leader Corbyn says MPs should have say on military action in Syria

KOPNFRONTASI-The leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, says members of parliament (MPs) should decide if British Prime Minister Theresa May can join the United States in any military action against Syria in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack.

Corbyn, a veteran anti-war campaigner, also demanded a political process for ending the war in Syria and preventing an escalation of the crisis.

US President Donald Trump has warned of imminent military action in Syria in response to the suspected chemical attack near Damascus on Saturday.

“Parliament should always be given a say on military action,” Corbyn told the BBC on Wednesday when asked about Syria.

“Obviously the situation is very serious, obviously there has to be, now, a demand for a political process to end the war in Syria. We cannot risk an escalation even further than it’s gone already.”

Corbyn also said countries involved should get around a negotiating table to find an end to the civil war by political means.

 “What happened last weekend was terrible. What we don’t want is bombardment which leads to escalation and leads to a hot war between Russia and America over the skies of Syria,” he said.

May is considering joining the United States in any military action in Syria.

The British premier is not bound by law to seek parliamentary approval for offensive military action, but many now believe lawmakers should always have a vote before the government takes military action.

On Wednesday May accused Syrian authorities of carrying out the alleged chemical attack, and said she was working with allies on how to hold those responsible to account.

Damascus, in a statement released late on Saturday, strongly rejected the allegation of using chemical munitions and said that the so-called Jaish al-Islam Takfiri terrorist group was repeating the false reports.

The Iranian and Russian governments have also rejected the accusations. Russia and Iran have warned against any US military action against the Syrian government.[mr/ptv]

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