Although many politicians in the ruling Tory British government have expressed opposition to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, with some endorsing the UK’s role in the US-led strikes against Syria on April 13, some members of the opposition, including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and members of his shadow cabinet, have called for restraint.
Shadow UK Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry told Prospect magazine on Wednesday that the West underestimates the level of support President Assad enjoys in Syria and suggested that opposition forces have exaggerated domestic opposition to the Syrian government.
“There is an argument that if [President Bashar al-Assad] had been as overwhelmingly unpopular as the rebels told the west at the outset then he wouldn’t be there. I think there has been a depth and a breadth of support for Assad that has been underestimated,” the British shadow foreign secretary told Prospect magazine on May 16.
Shadow FM Thornberry went on to insist that all foreign forces need to leave Syria.
“They’re not fighting for the sake of the Syrian people. Any of them. Saudi Arabia, Israel, Iran, Turkey, America, Britain—have I missed anyone?”
She proceeded to add Russia to the list.
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