US missile strike condemned by Welwyn Hatfield critics

PUBLISHED: 11:32 11 April 2017 | UPDATED: 12:23 11 April 2017

Vicky Woodcraft

Vicky Woodcraft

Archant

US air strikes on Syria are not justified and could make the country’s brutal six-year civil war even worse, according to Welwyn Hatfield critics.

Cllr Kieran ThorpeCllr Kieran Thorpe

Although Conservative MP Grant Shapps has praised last week’s cruise missile raids in response to the deaths from poison gas of at least 80 civilians, critics include the borough’s leading Labour politician and a dedicated campaigner for Syrian refugees.

Borough councillor Kieran Thorpe, Labour group leader, said: “Anyone who has seen the shocking scenes coming out of Syria will be deeply concerned about the welfare of civilians suffering such brutality, from wherever it comes.

“Of course, the suffering of innocents in Syria has been ongoing for many years, and it is depressing to hear a clamour for more violence to be deployed as a solution.

“Those who have not fled this war-torn country sit between two increasingly opposing superpowers doing little to reduce their misery. Nothing has been learnt from Iraq it seems.”

Humanitarian campaigner Vicky Woodcraft, a practising Quaker, said: “The use of chemical weapons was totally abhorrent and was rightly condemned across most of the world.

“I do not believe, however, that responding with a cruise missile attack will solve the multiple problems within Syria. It is likely to make worse what is already a very dangerous situation.

“Doing nothing is obviously not an option, but nor is a knee-jerk resort to violence.

“I would like to see the UK take a lead in bringing nations together in looking long and hard at the peaceful alternatives. This is neither easy nor sexy, but in the end the future of world depends on it.”

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