Barking and Dagenham MPs vote no to UK military action in Syria

Jon Cruddas

Jon Cruddas - Credit: Archant

Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas voted against UK military action and said he had been “inundated” by people from his constituency concerned about the issue.

MP Margaret Hodge

MP Margaret Hodge - Credit: Archant

Mr Cruddas and fellow MP Margaret Hodge both voted no to the prime minister’s call for a strike against Syrian’s government following a suspected chemical weapon attack on the outskirts of Damascus on August 21.

David Cameron lost the commons vote by 285-272, which means UK intervention will not go ahead at this stage.

Asked why he voted no, Mr Cruddas said: “I didn’t think there was sufficient explanation as to why, what were the objectives and how would we ensure we didn’t get pulled further into a civil war situation.

“Also we hadn’t given enough time for the weapon inspectors and UN involvement. Finally I had been inundated by people from across the constituency urging caution and to make sure more thought be given to this.”

The Labour politician said he believed the government has handled the situation “appallingly”.

Mrs Hodge, meanwhile, added: “The atrocities in Syria make us all sick to the stomach, but we have to learn the lessons of Iraq and tread extremely carefully in considering any form of military intervention.”

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“I am concerned that military intervention in this case may only make things worse, both in Syria and across the Middle East.”

The government’s motion supported military action if it was backed up by evidence from United Nations weapon inspectors who are investigating the chemical assault.

Both the UK and US government believe Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s government is behind the attack which reportedly killed hundreds.

An escalating conflict between forces loyal to Assad’s and those opposed to his rule has being going on since 2011.