left corner left corner
China Daily Website  

British PM to call parliament vote on airstrikes in Syria

Updated: 2015-12-01 09:50

British PM to call parliament vote on airstrikes in Syria

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron speaks at a press conference after attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in a hotel in Valletta, Malta November 28, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

LONDON -- British Prime Minister David Cameron said Monday he would call a one-day debate and vote in the House of Commons on Wednesday over airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) targets in Syria, British media reported Monday.

"I believe there's growing support across parliament for a compelling case there is to answer the call from our allies to act against ISIL (IS) in Syria and in Iraq," Cameron told British Sky News on Monday.

British airstrikes against IS targets have been limited to those in Iraq, and members of the Parliament (MPs) are still debating on whether to extend the military action to Syria.

Noting that the headquarters of IS is in Syria, Cameron added: "It makes no sense to recognize this (Iraq-Syria) border in the action we take when ISIL themselves don't recognize this border."

"So it is in the national interests. It's the right thing to do. We'll be acting with our allies. We'll be careful and responsible as we do so. But in my view, it is right to do this to help keep our country safe," he said.

Britain's Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has decided to give his MPs a free vote on airstrikes against IS in Syria, meaning that Labour MPs can decide according to their own judgment, regardless of their party leader's preferences.

On Monday, Corbyn wrote to Cameron, asking for a two-day debate on any proposal the government might bring forward, but the prime minister said the he would offer a one-day debate with longer hours.

"We'll have a very long and full debate on Wednesday. We'll take the action necessary to make sure that in many ways the equivalent number of hours you often have across a two-day debate in one day," Cameron elaborated.

He continued that he wanted MPs to be able to "have full consideration, to make speeches, to make points, to ask me questions, to examine the government's case."

Cameron said earlier he would not call a vote in the House of Commons over the issue unless he was confident of winning it.


  • Group a building block for Africa

    An unusually heavy downpour hit Durban for two days before the BRICS summit's debut on African soil, but interest for a better platform for emerging markets were still sparked at the summit.