Alliance MLA Trevor Lunn has said it is “deeply concerning” the UK authorised air strikes in Syria without Parliamentary approval and lacking any clear strategy for ending the conflict in the country.
Mr Lunn was speaking as Prime Minister Theresa May faced questions in Parliament about the action, which saw the UK join the US and France in bombing three Syrian sites on Saturday, in response to a suspected chemical attack on the town of Douma.
“When these airstrikes were ordered, there was no imminent threat and so there was time for the available evidence to be considered and a Parliamentary vote to be taken on the matter. There appears to be no clear strategic plan either for ending the conflict in Syria, meaning these strikes will have little long-term impact,” said Mr Lunn.
“Hypocrisy surrounds this decision, as those backing it are claiming it is for humanitarian reasons, but the US and UK Governments also restrict access to many potential Syrian refugees, who are often displaced due to military action in their country. In addition, when our allies in the region carry out similar actions, those Governments frequently remain silent.
“There absolutely should have been a vote in Parliament before the UK Government made such a decision. That was promised before and should stand now, particularly regarding the grounds for taking military action on the basis of a sabre-rattling President engaging in diplomacy via Twitter.”