FOREIGN AFFAIRS – SYRIA – 10 July 2013

Dr Julian Lewis: May I warmly welcome the assurance that the Foreign Secretary has given that no lethal support will be supplied to the Syrian opposition without a prior vote in Parliament, as I do a similar assurance previously given by the Leader of the House, of which I was not aware until recently? However, may I remind the Foreign Secretary that, by coincidence, tomorrow we have a debate led by my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Basildon and Billericay (Mr Baron) on that very subject? May we therefore presume that if the House divides tomorrow, Ministers will be voting for the motion, rather than just sitting on their hands?

[The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Mr William Hague): My hon. Friend may find that most Ministers are elsewhere tomorrow, so I am unable to say what most of them will do, but the Government have made their position clear, and the House is able to make its position clear as well. The Government having already done so, we do not see the need to vote for – or, in this case, against – a motion of that kind.]