LONDON, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) — British Prime Minister David Cameron on Tuesday said no decisions had been taken on Syria but Britain and its allies must decide whether limited military action was needed to “deter and degrade the future use of chemical weapons.”
The prime minister said the world could “not stand idly by” in the face of the “massive use” of banned weapons. But “any response must be legal, proportionate and specifically to deter the use of chemical weapons.”
Cameron said he would recall parliament on Thursday to vote on a government motion on how to respond to last Wednesday’s suspected gas attack near Damascus.
Britain’s armed forces are working on contingency plans for military action as a response to the alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria, Cameron’s spokesman said earlier on Tuesday.
10 Downing Street indicated a decision could be taken before the results of a report by UN weapons inspectors into the attack, Sky News reported.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said the West could act on Syria even without full UN Security Council backing.
British MPs from all parties are concerned about the consequences of military intervention in Syria. However, the parliament’s vote on Thursday will not be legally binding.
Although the Commons voted on Britain’s military intervention in Iraq in 2003 and Libya in 2011, Cameron has the final say on deploying troops in conflicts, using royal prerogative powers.
In a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, Cameron said “there was little doubt that this was an attack carried out by the Syrian regime.”
But Putin said that they did not have evidence of whether a chemical weapons attack had taken place or who was responsible