JEREMY CORBYN will confront Theresa May in the Commons today after claiming Donald Trump’s tweets convinced her to join in the bombing raid on Syria.
The Labour leader will tell the prime minister she should have given MPs a vote before ordering military action. He said on BBC1’s The Andrew Marr show yesterday: ‘The PM was more interested in following Donald Trump’s lead than anything else.
This is policy made up by Twitter.’
Mrs May will today tell MPs her reasons for joining with America and France to destroy three suspected chemical weapons facilities with 105 missiles fired from planes and ships at 2am on Saturday.
Mrs May will today call for an emergency debate in the Commons on Syria to give MPs the chance to discuss the military action.
She has said Britain’s involvement was ‘right and legal’ after dozens of Syrian civilians died in a suspected chemical attack by the forces of the country’s president Bashar al-Assad.
But Mr Corbyn will call for a new war powers act to prevent any British government ordering military action without Parliament’s agreement. The SNP said it would back this.
Mr Corbyn said it was wrong to conclude a chemical attack caused the deaths before investigators began their search for evidence in the Damascus suburb of Douma yesterday. And he said Mr Assad should only be ‘confronted’ if evidence is found.
He said the right course of action would have been for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to destroy stockpiles of toxins, ‘as they did in 2013 and 2015’. Mr Corbyn added he could only ever agree to military intervention if it was backed by the UN.
‘No one would ever say never, but the object has to be a process which brings about peace,’ he said. ‘It’s hard work and it takes patience but surely that is better than the danger of the escalation of this conflict into a proxy war between the US and Russia over the skies of Syria.’
Mrs May will tell MPs that Britain acted to stop Mr Assad carrying out future chemical weapons attacks.
No.10 said she would highlight the ‘strong international backing’ Britain and its allies received after the air strikes. UN security council inspectors have found Mr Assad’s regime responsible for four previous chemical attacks, Mrs May will also say.
She will add the UK was confident Assad ‘was highly likely responsible for this attack’.
The SNP said it would back Labour’s call for a war powers act.
■ RUSSIA is believed to be engaging in a ‘disinformation campaign’ after the strikes in Syria, using bots and trolls on sites such as Twitter. There has been a ‘20-fold increase’ in online bots, the Daily Telegraph reports. Hackers were feared to be getting set for a ‘cyber war’ against the UK, targeting hospitals, airports and energy suppliers, the Daily Express adds. The US reports a ‘2,000 per cent’ rise in trolls since the strikes.