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1 December 2015, 21:33
Capital has been asking MPs in the East Midlands how they intend to vote after the debate on extending airstrikes on IS to Syria.
Andrew Bridgen MP for North West Leicestershire gave this statement to Capital on the vote and debate:
The attacks in Paris on 13 November were the worst act of violence in France since the Second World War. The victims were innocent people spending time with friends and family, doing no one any harm. Our solidarity with the people of France in the last few days has been absolute and it showed our Country at its best.
I believe our solidarity now needs to extend into countering the threat of ISIS. I have commented on this widely in the media in recent days and to give some background to this, in 2013 a vote was called in the House of Commons to allow Military action in Syria. The target was the regime of Bashar al-Assad and the action proposed was to assist rebel forces. I listened carefully to the arguments put by the Government at the time, and whilst there is no doubt that the al-Assad regime is despicable, I reflected on the experiences of Iraq and other Countries where regime change had been achieved through intervention, and the subsequent issues that have transpired following this. Further to this, I led the rebellion that voted the proposal down.
Whilst al-Assad was not a direct threat to this Country, ISIS without a doubt are. What happened in Paris could as easily have happened in the London, Birmingham, Leicester or indeed anywhere in the UK. We know that our Security Services have thwarted 7 recent terrorism attempts. I supported strikes against ISIS targets in Iraq so the current position of not striking the targets in Syria is plainly illogical. On this basis, and given the strikes will be against targets that represent a threat to our national security, I will be giving my full backing to strikes in Syria if and when there is a vote in the House of Commons.
Mark Spencer MP for Sherwood told Capital he would be voting yes:
Nottingham's Graham Allen a Labour MP wrote on the airstrikes:
"To throw into the mix a tiny UK air force (of perhaps no more than five jets) will only inflame the incendiary cocktail of religious, ethnic and sectarian violence and civil war that has been unleashed in the region. There are already call for UK troops on the ground and we know from Afghanistan and Iraq that without a clear strategy, the military and politicians rapidly succumb to "mission creep" not least when surprised by unconventional warfare waged by a fanatical enemy. Attacking another country and taking [including large numbers of civilian] lives without an internationally agreed plan of what we wish to achieve, how - even if we were successful - we would fill the institutional, political and religious vacuum, how we would build a lasting peace and what our exit strategy should be, would be to rerun and amplify the mistakes we have made in the last decade in the region."