Idlib massacre: MP Alison McGovern struggles to defend her 2013 vote against air strikes

Members of the White Helmets rescue forces remove a body after the bombardment of Idlib in March 2017. The city has suffered another horrific bombardment this week

Members of the White Helmets rescue forces remove a body after the bombardment of Idlib in March 2017. The city has suffered another horrific bombardment this week

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The vice chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Syria stumbled when asked whether she regretted voting against air strikes on talkRADIO this morning.

MP Alison McGovern voted against the strikes four years ago - but struggled to explain her decision to Julia Hartley-Brewer in light of the massacre in Idlib this week, which has left at least 70 people dead after toxic gas was dropped from warplanes.

Julia asked the Labour MP whether she was ashamed of voting against air strikes in Syria in 2013. However McGovern demured, saying only "there isn’t an easy yes-no answer to that question" and it was impossible to foresee the current carnage at the time.

She then added that she "regrets every missed opportunity in the House of Commons where I could have spoken out more" but refused to give a clearer response, despite pressure from our presenter.

McGovern also said British people will be looking at the current events with "despair" - a suggestion which drew incredulity from Julia.

Listen to the full audio above

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