Chancellor Angela Merkel offered implicit support for military action against Syria, upbraiding her coalition partner for ruling out German participation in a response to an offensive in the country’s last rebel stronghold.
Germany’s Social Democrats, the junior partner in Merkel’s government, this week rejected a German role in any military strike should President Bashar al-Assad and his backers create a humanitarian crisis in Idlib or deploy chemical weapons.
“Simply to say that we can pull away when chemical weapons are being deployed and international conventions are violated, that also cannot be the answer,” Merkel told lawmakers in Germany’s lower house on Wednesday.
“To simply say no right from the start, no matter what is happening in the world, that cannot be Germany’s position,” she added.
A political solution remains the preferred route and any action will be taken in accordance with Germany’s constitution, Merkel said.