Stop the War Coalition called emergency demonstrations across the UK last night to protest extending British airstrikes against ISIS.
Words: Isabella Ellis, Subeditor: Mariya Savova
Over 1,000 protestors filled Parliament Square in London on Tuesday evening ahead of tonight’s commons vote on airstrikes against ISIS in Syria. Following November’s attacks in Paris, Prime Minister David Cameron has put forward a case to extend the bombing campaign against the terrorist organisation from Iraq to Syria, too.
Demonstrators gathered at 6pm and were met by speakers including Green MP Caroline Lucas and Labour MP Richard Burgon. Burgon urged Labour MPs to listen to supporters, rally behind their leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and vote against the prime minister’s proposals.
David Cameron’s plans for military action suffered a further blow last night, as while protestors marched to Conservative headquarters, news broke that a vote by the foreign select committee found the prime minister “had not adequately addressed concerns.”
Protestor, Amy Downham, told Voice of London she thinks that airstrikes in Syria will in fact increase ISIS recruitment.
”Apart from the obvious – that bombs kill people and cannot ask for their ID before doing so, bombing Syria will have adverse affects from what Cameron is hoping. If we bomb Syria, Isis will have reason point their finger and say ‘See! They are evil! Join us and we will protect you’… if my house was crumbling around me and my family was starving and the rest of the world was dropping bombs on me then I would join them. I would. Because we all want to live as human beings,” said Downham.
Stop the War Coalition has organised a ”die in” due to start at 6pm this evening in Parliament Square to further oppose the strikes.
Jeremy Corbyn wrote in the Guardian ‘’He knows that opposition to his ill-thought-out rush to war is growing. On planning, strategy, ground troops, diplomacy, the terrorist threat, refugees and civilian casualties, it’s become increasingly clear the prime minister’s proposal simply doesn’t stack up…Cameron’s approach is bomb first, talk later.’’
The debate is due to last 10 hours and will culminate in a decision whether Britain will join the coalition of US, French, and Russian forces bombing ISIS strongholds in Syria. According to research published by the BBC, 362 of 640 MPs are expected to vote in favour of the strikes.