Britain could be going to war in Syria within hours if MPs support the Government’s proposal to extend air strikes against Isis.
Representatives from all parties gave passionate speeches both for and against intervention in a marathon debate in the House of Commons.
With dozens of Labour MPs expected to defy their leader to support the Government’s motion, the vote scheduled for 10pm was expected to fall in David Cameron’s favour.
He said that the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) and MI5 both assessed that the UK was among the terrorist group's “top tier” targets and further were now being planned by “the head of the snake” in Raqqa, Syria.
“We face a fundamental threat to our security,” the Prime Minister said.
“Isil have brutally murdered British hostages, they have inspired the worst terrorist attack against British people since 7/7 on the beaches of Tunisia, and they have plotted atrocity after atrocity on the streets here at home.”
After several MPs raised concerns that bombing Syria would raise the risk of attack on UK, he said several recent attempts have already been thwarted.
“So this threat is very real and the question is this,” he said.
“Do we work with our allies to degrade and destroy this threat and do we go after these terrorists in their heartlands from where they are plotting to kill British people, or do we sit back and wait for them to attack us?”
Jeremy Corbyn said the Prime Minister’s case for bombing had failed its tests, saying approving his plan would be “another ill-fated twist in this never-ending war on terror”.
“After Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, I ask members to think very carefully about previous decisions that have been made. What we are proposing to do today is send British bombers,” the Leader of the Opposition said.
”I think our overriding goal should be to end that civil war in Syria and obviously also to protect the people in this country…I urge members on all sides of the House to think very carefully about the responsibility that lies with them today.
“Do we send in bombers not totally aware of what the consequences are going to be, or do we pause, not send them in and instead put all of our efforts into bringing about a peaceful, humanitarian and just political settlement to the terrible situation faced by the people in Syria.”
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