UK revisits possibility of military action in Syria

Osborne says there is a “strong case” for armed intervention against Islamic State


The UK is revisiting the possibility of military action in Syria in an effort to tackle the migration crisis that saw thousands of migrants arrive in Germany and Austria from Hungary this weekend.

The Hungarian government bussed undocumented migrants from the capital, Budapest, towards the Austrian and German border in 100 specially chartered buses on Saturday. Meanwhile Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban vowed to cut illegal immigration into Hungary to zero by September 15th when a 175km fence with the Serbian border is completed.

As divisions continued at EU level about how to tackle the migrant crisis, British chancellor of the exchequer George Osborne said there was “a strong case” for military intervention against Islamic State in Syria, but that the UK government would only put forward another House of Commons vote if it was likely to have parliamentary backing. His call for military intervention appeared to be given backing by the former archbishop of Canterbury George Carey who, in an article in the Sunday Telegraph, called for a renewed military effort to “crush” Islamic State.

Commons vote

David CameronIraq

With the Labour party in the midst of a leadership contest, the favourite to succeed Ed Miliband, Jeremy Corbyn, is likely to oppose military intervention in Syria. Yvette Cooper, another leadership contender, said she took a “very cautious view” on military intervention.

Relocation plan


European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker is due to unveil details of a relocation programme for asylum seekers on Wednesday in Strasbourg, which will then be considered by justice and home affairs ministers at a meeting in Brussels in a week’s time. Spain, Britain and a number of central and eastern European countries are opposed to the concept of mandatory quotas for refugees, an idea that has been mooted by Germany for some time. Germany is expected to accept up to 800,000 migrants and refugees this year.

More than 10,000 undocumented migrants are believed to have entered Germany over the weekend, with most entering reception centres in the south of the country. Approximately 4,000 refugees crossed into Austria from Hungary, according to policy. Both Austria and Germany have in effect waived EU asylum rules which oblige refugees to apply for asylum in the country where they first arrive.