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Syria Airstrikes Not Ruled Out, Says No 10

Earlier reports suggest that Philip Hammond had refused to join Washingtons airstrike campaign against Syria. He said “Let me be clear, Britain will not be taking part in any airstrikes in Syria. I can be very clear about that,”  However, it now seems there was some confusion and Downing Street have had to clarify their postion:

Downing Street has clarified its position on the possibility of strikes in Syria, saying it has not yet abandoned the idea of airborne attacks.

The Foreign Secretary earlier appeared to take a different stance when he said the UK would definitely not be taking part.

“Philip Hammond was speaking after Barack Obama authorised attacks on IS fighters in Syria, as well as Iraq, for the first time, saying the terrorists had a free passage across the countries’ borders.

Mr Obama said the move did not amount to support for the Assad regime in Syria, which has always claimed the terrorists were behind the uprising in the country, now in its third year.

Speaking at a news conference in Berlin, Philip Hammond told reporters the UK would not be joining the US and said the decision would not be “revisited”.

“Let me be clear,” he said. “Britain will not be taking part in airstrikes in Syria. I can be very clear about that.

“We have already had that discussion in our Parliament last year.”

However, the Prime Minister’s spokesman later clarified his words.

“In terms of air power and the like, the Prime Minister has not ruled anything out. That is the position. No decisions have been taken in that regard.

“The point he (Mr Hammond) was making was that last year Parliament expressed its view with regard to taking action with airstrikes against the Assad regime.”

Continue Reading Report from Sky News