UK's decision against Syria military action welcomed

Shatila refugee camp near Beirut, Lebanon, was set up by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in 1949 for Palestinian refugees. The camp, which was already overcrowded, is now home to even more refugees who have fled from the conflict in Syria.(Photo: Christian Aid)

Christian Aid has welcomed the UK government's decision not to take part in military action against Syria.

David Cameron floated military action in response to reports of chemical weapons use in the Syrian conflict but the Prime Minister suffered a humiliating defeat in Parliament.

Christian Aid has responded by calling for increased efforts to find a political solution to the conflict instead.

Janet Symes, Head of Middle East at Christian Aid, said Parliament's decision opened the door for the UK Government to invest its energy in promoting peaceful alternatives to military action.

"The UK Government can play an important role in bringing about a political settlement by bringing all parties to the table at the Geneva peace talks in order to help move towards a process of dialogue that can bring the conflict to an end," she said.

"The UK government has already played an important role in the humanitarian effort to assist Syrian people and this decision will enable the government to continue to do so.

"We call on the government to continue to play this role, and indeed redouble their efforts to ensure a resolution to the humanitarian crisis."

Christian Aid is funding emergency assistance to victims of the conflict, including refugees in Lebanon and Iraq, through local partners on the ground.

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