MPs support government air strikes in Iraq

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MEMBERS of Parliament across the area have all voted in support of the UK being involved in air strikes in Iraq against Islamic State.

The motion being debated by the Commons states that troops will not be deployed in ‘ground combat operations’ against IS - also known as Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (Isil).

Conservative MP Mark Hoban, who represents Fareham, said: ‘I have been supporting this for some time now. I don’t think we can stand by and allow Isil to carry out so many atrocities.’

Asked what he would say to constituents concerned by the prospect of intervention in Iraq, he said: ‘I don’t think we can stand by and we failed to take action in Syria last year and we have seen what doing nothing has done.

‘We have continued to see atrocities in the Middle East and there is a grave risk to security on our own streets if we do not act.’

George Hollingbery, conservative MP for the Meon Valley, added: ‘At this stage I just think it’s absolutely undeniable that there are a group of people that have taken over a very large chunk of a country who have asked for help.

‘We can’t sit on the sidelines and see what happens.

‘It’s a threat to all of us, not just in the UK but around the world.

‘We have to join forces with others and help others to do the right thing.’

Independent Portsmouth South MP Mike Hancock said: ‘As many people know, I was strongly opposed to the 2003 Iraq War. It was based on a dodgy dossier which has led to instability and the death of innocent civilians.

‘However, unlike in 2003, the sheer brutality of ISIL is a direct threat to Britain and to the people of Iraq.

‘ISIL have been responsible for the kidnapping and murder of humanitarian workers, the abuse of women and children, the mass murder of religious minorities and countless more barbaric acts.

‘While I know that many people are opposed to military intervention in the Middle East after the disaster of the Iraq War, I believe it is right that we play our part in the international effort, which includes a number of Arab countries, to stop this vile and murderous group.’

David Willetts, conservative MP for Havant, added: ‘I think IS is a real threat and there has been a request from the Iraqi government for us to help them.

‘They are not just a threat to countries in the Middle East.’

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage and Penny Mordaunt, Portsmouth North MP also supported the action.

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