United Kingdom joins Syria air strikes in response to chemical attack

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media captionMay'Use of chemical weapons cannot go unchallenged

Prime Minister Theresa May has summoned the cabinet to discuss the government's response to the suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria, a BBC News report said on Thursday.

Corbyn has written to May seeking assurance that there would be no further bombing raids and urged the government to negotiate a pause in the Syrian civil war.

'Cabinet agreed on the need to take action to alleviate humanitarian distress and to deter the further use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime, ' Downing Street said in a statement.

"This action risks not just further escalating the civil war in Syria but also a risky escalation of global tensions", said the leader of the left-wing Scottish National Party, the third-biggest force in the British parliament.

The decision to strike, after days of deliberations, marked Trump's second order to attack Syria; he authorized a barrage of Tomahawk cruise missiles to hit a single Syrian airfield in April 2017 in retaliation for Assad's use of sarin gas against civilians.

"And a significant body of the information including intelligence indicates the Syrian Regime is responsible for this latest attack".

Military bases near the capital Damascus and the city of Homs were targeted, after an alleged chemical attack on the Syrian town of Douma. Britain's Parliament is in recess until Monday, though it could be recalled for an emergency debate. He said earlier this week that France was ready to attack the "chemical capabilities" of the Assad regime.

She is expected to add: "We have done it because we believed it was the right thing to do".

Germany will not join any military strikes, but supports Western efforts to show chemical weapons use is unacceptable, Chancellor Angela Merkel says.

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The shadow of the 2003 invasion of Iraq still lingers in the corridors of Britain's parliament, when MPs backed then-prime minister Tony Blair in joining U.S. military action.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, who has opposed British military action throughout his career, described the attack as "legally questionable".

"The Syrian Regime has a history of using chemical weapons against its own people in the most cruel and abhorrent way".

"I have done so because I judge this action to be in Britain's national interest", she added.

May is not obliged to win parliament's approval before ordering military action, but a non-binding constitutional convention to do so has been established since a 2003 vote on joining the US -led invasion of Iraq.

A separate YouGov survey on Thursday found 61 percent of people think it would be necessary for parliament to vote on military action against Syria, with just 18 percent saying it was not necessary and 21 percent undecided.

Former Prime Minister David Cameron lost a parliamentary vote on air strikes against Assad's forces in 2013 when 30 Conservative lawmakers voted against action, with many Britons wary of entering another conflict after intervention in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya failed to bring stability to the region.

Syrian state media said there had been a "violation of worldwide law".

But they backed action in Iraq the following year, and again in Syria in 2015, strictly limiting strikes to targets of the Islamic State group. A USA -led coalition has been conducting airstrikes in Syria since September 2014 as part of a largely successful effort to break the IS grip on both Syria and Iraq.

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