ON September 7, the first day of Parliament following the summer closure, Prime Minister David Cameron defended his decision made without consulting Parliament to authorise an unprecedented aerial strike in Syria that killed two Britons fighting alongside ISIS on August 21.
He justified the strikes on the grounds that Reyaad Khan, a 21-year-old from Cardiff, who had featured in a prominent ISIS recruiting video last year, represented a ‘clear and present danger’. A second British national, Ruhul Amin, who was not specifically targeted but was accompanying the former student, was also killed.
According to reports, the two men were allegedly planning to attack Her Majesty the Queen and other dignitaries during a VJ Day celebration which was held in central London in August, although this never came to fruition and there are also suggestions that they had planned a UK attack in June of this year which was foiled by the security services.
‘We had no way of preventing his planned attacks on our country without taking direct action.’ Mr Cameron said and then went on to state ‘If there is a direct threat to the British people, and we are able to stop it by taking immediate action, then I will always be prepared to take that action.’
The PM said he was advised by Attorney General Jeremy Wright that the attack on Khan and Amin was “entirely lawful” – despite having no Parliamentary approval to launch attacks in Syria.
This is the first time in modern times the Government has admitted murdering its own citizens outside a war situation and interim Labour leader Harriet Harman demanded more transparency over the decision calling on the Government to publish its legal advice.
The controversy over this decision can only continue.