Watch Mike intervene on an urgent question to the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on Aleppo.
Mike Gapes MP (Ilford South):
The Minister referred to the long term. Can he tell us how long is long term? He also made reference to the vote in this House in 2013. Is not the real failure the fact that our Government and the United States Government did not impose no-fly zones and humanitarian corridors when they could have done in 2011 and 2012? Now it might be very difficult to do so. That is the real failure. Non-intervention is not necessarily the best policy.
Tobias Ellwood (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs):
I am a former soldier, and I looked at the idea of no-fly zones and humanitarian corridors. I even wrote some papers on it when I was on the Back Benches. The trouble is: who implements them, and what authority would they have to be in the country? We wanted to take Syria through the UN Security Council to the International Criminal Court, and guess who vetoed it: China and Russia. That is the difficulty we have. We have to ask ourselves how we would implement and enforce such a no-fly zone. I concur with the spirit of what the hon. Gentleman says, but these are the realities of where we actually are.