Sep 032013

Parliament will get the chance to debate whether New Zealand should offer support for military strikes against Syria – but government ministers will make final decision, Prime Minister John Key says.

Western leaders are deliberating how to respond to the use of chemical weapons allegedly by Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

The United States says a sarin gas attack on August 21 killed more than 1400 people, including 400 children.

US President Barack Obama announced at the weekend that he will await approval from the House and Senate before ordering any action.

New Zealand’s Defence Force does not have the capability to join in any targeted air strikes.

But US Secretary of State John Kerry has asked Foreign Minister Murray McCully if the New Zealand Government would lend “moral support” to military intervention.

Key said ministers would weigh up the circumstances and the process, but would prefer any action came with a UN Security Council mandate.

He also wanted to see the analysis of information gathered by UN weapons inspectors.

The final decision will not go before Parliament, but National would introduce a ministerial notion which would allow all parties to debate the matter.

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  One Response to “John Key says Syria is government’s alone”

  1. So the US needs our sons and daughters to fight Al qaeda in Syria as well as our moral support – it would only be the politician’s immoral support the US would be getting, if any. According to a recent Stuff poll 90.6% of the respondents were against war or only under UN mandate. And, after Afghanistan, I don’t think our defence force members would be so keen to blindly follow the US into another illegal war of agression.

    A new Twitter hashtag (#IdidntJoin) has been flooded with messages from US service members expressing their displeasure with the idea of being forced to fight for al-Qaeda in Syria