Boris Johnson calls Assad a 'monster' who needs 'decapitating'

Boris Johnson has likened Syrian president Bashar Assad to a "monster" who needs "decapitating".

The Foreign Secretary was asked in the Commons how Mr Assad could be punished for using chemical weapons without allowing a "virulent Islamist regime" to replace him.

Mr Johnson said he agreed with the wisdom of the remark from Julian Lewis, the Conservative chairman of the defence select committee.

"The essential thing will be to have a political process that preserves the institutions of the Syrian state while decapitating the monster", he said.

The Foreign Secretary has previously said there will be "no impunity" for the people responsible for the chemical weapons attack.

Mr Johnson also suggested that Britain could support the United States in the event of further missile strikes on Syria.

He said it would be "very difficult" for the UK to say no to a request for support from the US to a future strike if it was in pursuit of similar objectives.

Earlier this month the US fired 59 Tomahawk missiles at a Syrian airbase which was suspected of launching a chemical attack and they have threatened further action .

Mr Johnson said the US did not ask the UK for specific support ahead of that strike.

The US airstrike this month was the first direct military action taken against President Assad by the US.

In 2013, the House of Commons voted against airstrikes in Syria and the US, under President Barack Obama, also decided against direct military action against Mr Assad.

Whilst speaking to the Commons, Mr Johnson encouraged Russia to end its "blind support" for Mr Assad following growing tensions between the west and Russia over the right course of action to take in Syria.

By using Yahoo you agree that Yahoo and partners may use Cookies for personalisation and other purposes