In 2013 David Cameron sought parliamentary approval to bomb the Syrian Government led by Bashar Al-Assad
TORY Defence Secretary Michael Fallon is expected to say that MPs should look again at bombing ISIS targets in Syria, after the coalition government was famously defeated in 2013 by Labour and Tory rebels on plans to bomb Syria.
RAF fighter jets have been bombing ISIS, also known as Daesh, in Iraq since September, and with the recent attack in Tunisia which killed 29 Britons on holiday, the government believes the time may be right to put the House of Commons to the test again on bombing in Syria.
When the government was defeated on plans to bomb in Syria in August 2013, the target then was embattled Syrian leader Bashar Al-Assad in order to support the rebels opposing him.
Now, two years on, the most powerful rebel opposition to Assad, ISIS, is the target of the planned attack.
Fallon said on BBC Radio 4 on Wednesday [1 June] that there was an “illogicality” about British aerial forces observing the Iraq-Syria border when ISIS, which controls a swathe of land across Iraq and Syria the size of the UK, does not “differentiate”.
“There’s no legal bar to us operating in Syria but we don’t have the parliamentary approval for it,” Fallon said.
It’s likely that Prime Minister David Cameron would not risk a second defeat on bombing in Syria, and therefore will only go ahead with a vote for approval if Labour agree to vote with the government. Labour’s position is as yet unclear.
The death toll from the four-year civil war in Syria is estimated to be over 300,000, with more than four million fleeing to neighbouring countries to escape the violence.
The SNP has joined a cross-party campaign of MPs to start referring to ISIS by their Arabic name of ‘Daesh’, after criticism of the BBC from the prime minister for using the term ‘Islamic State’.
Picture courtesy of UK Ministry of Defence