May mulls Syria action despite cautious mood in UK

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May walks out of 10 Downing Street to greet Portugal's Prime Minister Antonio Costa in London

UK's May summons ministers for Syria meeting

British Prime Minister Theresa May summoned her "war cabinet" Thursday morning to discuss possible military intervention in Syria over a suspected chemical attack which killed dozens.

Earlier, the BBC said May would not seek prior parliamentary approval for joining military action because she favoured taking action soon.

Citing unnamed sources, the BBC reported May is prepared to take action against the Assad regime without first seeking parliamentary consent.

May has indicated she wants Britain to join in any USA -led strikes in response to the attack in Douma.

Parliament voted down British military action against Assad's government in 2013, in an embarrassment for May's predecessor, David Cameron.

"While I realise that working for the "national interest" is an alien concept to Mrs May and our political establishment, they nevertheless should not be dragged into a war on the say so of Donald Trump or anyone else".

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May has not confirmed whether Britain will participate directly, but said "the continued use of chemical weapons can not go unchallenged".

A YouGov poll in The Times conducted this week found that 43 percent of voters oppose strikes in Syria, with 34 percent unsure and only 22 percent supportive.

However, some of her MPs have expressed caution about getting involved in the complex conflict in Syria and are pressing for parliament to be recalled from its Easter break to discuss any action. She changed her tone speaking to reporters Wednesday afternoon, insisting that "all the indications" were that the Assad regime was responsible for the "shocking, barbaric" attack.

Many MPs have called for Britain to act against Syria, warning that the use of chemical weapons was in breach of worldwide law and could not be allowed to go unpunished. May isn't legally required to do that, though it is conventional for lawmakers to be given the chance to vote.

Britain has launched air strikes against Islamic State militants in Syria, but not against the country's government. That then deterred the USA administration of Barack Obama from similar action.

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