UK PM May: British forces conduct targeted strike against Syria

The British government has signaled it is ready to back US military action against Syria saying it is

British Prime Minister Theresa May said Saturday that the United Kingdom is clear that the Assad regime is responsible for Douma chemical attack and confirmed United Kingdom hit a specific and limited set of targets in Syria.

"We are confident in our own assessment that the Syrian regime was highly likely responsible for this attack and that its persistent pattern of behaviour meant that it was highly likely to continue using chemical weapons", Mrs May will add.

"This is not about intervening in a civil war. It is not about regime change", May said in a statement.

May said the missile strike was created to minimize any civilian casualties and was not an attempt to change the Syrian government.

Bombing Syria was in Britain's national interest and has had strong global support, Theresa May will insist as she tells Parliament why she ordered the attack.

US President Donald Trump warned Russian Federation yesterday of imminent military action in Syria, declaring that missiles "will be coming" and lambasting Moscow for standing by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

She will say: "Let me be absolutely clear: we have acted because it is in our national interest to do so".

Later, May's office said she had spoken with Trump by telephone, and the two had agreed it was vital to challenge Assad's use of chemical weapons, and that they would continue to work closely together to do so.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that four RAF Tornado jets were deployed to launch missiles at a Syrian military facility.

May has repeatedly said that the missile strike on Syria was not about "regime change".

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Downing Street yesterday published the government's legal position, which said the attacks were permitted under global law after the deaths of 400,000 people in the conflict.

"The facility which was struck is located some distance from any known concentrations of civilian habitation, reducing yet further any such risk", the MoD said in a statement.

May held an emergency cabinet meeting to discuss possible action on Thursday and there had been calls for the British parliament to be consulted before any air strikes.

May will face questions from MPs on Monday, when parliament reconvenes after a break.

May is not obliged to win parliament's approval, but a non-binding constitutional convention to do so has been established since a 2003 vote on joining the USA -led invasion of Iraq.

But shadow attorney general Baroness Chakrabarti questioned the Government's justification for the air strikes, telling BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "You can't use force under global law just to punish Syria for bad behaviour".

British lawmakers voted down taking military action against Damascus in 2013, in what was widely viewed as an assertion of parliamentary sovereignty on the use of force.

Opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, a veteran anti-war campaigner, said Britain should press for a U.N. -led investigation rather than follow the lead of the United States.

"This legally questionable action risks escalating further.an already devastating conflict".

The UK has begun air strikes against Syrian chemical weapons sites.

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