In a 285-272 decision, the House of Commons has voted down the U.K. government’s motion to provisionally authorize military intervention in Syria.
Earlier on Thursday, the government issued a statement asserting the legality of a military strike without United Nations Security Council approval — something Prime Minister Cameron, along with President Obama, have been inching toward.
The Guardian reports that one MP shouted “resign” at Cameron at one point. After the vote, the prime minister accepted defeat.
Cameron’s statement to the House:
I strongly believe in the need for a tough response to the use of chemical weapons, but I also believe in respecting the will of this House of Commons. It is very clear tonight that, while the House has not passed a motion, it is clear to me that the British parliament, reflecting the views of the British people, does not want to see British military action. I get that and the government will act accordingly.
U.K. Defense Secretary Philip Hammond confirmed there will be no British involvement in Syria. He said the U.S. “will be disappointed” but that he doesn’t “expect that the lack of British participation will stop any action.”
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