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10 Apr, 2017 15:51

Syria could become US-Russian proxy war – Jeremy Corbyn

Syria could become US-Russian proxy war – Jeremy Corbyn

British leaders should be wary of a US-Russian proxy war being played out in Syria at the expense of any kind of peaceful settlement, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn warned.

The Labour leader also criticized UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson for suggesting at a G7 summit in Italy that US President Donald Trump could launch further missile strikes against forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Corbyn told the BBC that any solution had to be “political.”

Surely we have to get Russia and America around the table together to put pressure on respective parties to this war, because it’s in danger of becoming a proxy war between them, in order to have a meaningful and effective ceasefire,” he said.

The lifelong anti-war campaigner said there is a risk that clashes and posturing could escalate into a major war.

“If one side strikes and another side retaliates therein lies the road to something utterly disastrous,” he said.

Commenting in the Murdoch-owned Sun newspaper, Johnson called for a new round of sanctions to be imposed on Russia.

We cannot miss this moment. It is time for [Russian President Vladimir] Putin to face the truth about the tyrant he is still propping up,” Johnson said.

Responding to the comments, Corbyn said: “It seems that he’s [Johnson] encouraging further bombing – I don’t believe that’s going to bring a solution anywhere nearer.

Johnson cancelled a planned trip to Moscow due to the alleged Sheikhoun Khan chemical attack, which precipitated the US bombing of the Shayrat Airbase.

That decision was also criticized by Scottish National Party (SNP) foreign affairs spokesperson Alex Salmond.

Boris Johnson just looks daft. What is the argument for not going ahead with a visit? Rex Tillerson [US Secretary of State] is going on Wednesday so it can’t be that we have moved to a Cold War position of no talking whatsoever,” Salmond told the BBC.

The idea the foreign secretary can’t be trusted because he might pursue his own line or have an independent thought or crossover what the Americans are going to say just makes him look like some sort of mini-me to the United States of America.