Close to three-quarters of the British public support Parliament’s rejection of military intervention in Syria, a poll released by the BBC found.
The poll, conducted by ICM Research and published Monday, found that 71 percent of the British public thought Parliament made the correct decision.
The telephone survey — conducted among 1,000 people from England, Scotland and Wales from Friday to Monday — also showed that 72% of British citizens don’t believe the government’s decision is likely to damage the relationship between the UK and the US.
The news comes ahead of a Congressional vote on American intervention, likely to come next week, and amid rumors that the issue could be put before British lawmakers for another try at authorization.
Last week, British Prime Minister David Cameron’s petition for an attack on Syria was rebuked by the UK Parliament, despite piling evidence that forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad had used chemical weapons against civilians and rebel fighters in the region during an attack on August 21.
According to a report in The Times of London, Cameron’s decision to rule out action in Syria — following a parliamentary vote last week that rejected intervention — was taken to mean that Britain would not get involved even if Assad’s regime were to carry out an additional chemical weapons attack.
According to the BBC, 49% of people questioned believed that the vote would hurt Britain’s international reputation, while 16% said it would hurt the country’s reputation a lot, and 44% said it would make no difference at all.
The poll’s findings are broadly in line with other similar opinion polls, which have also concluded that a substantive majority of people are against UK military involvement in Syria, the BBC reported.
On Saturday, US President Barack Obama delivered a White House speech saying he would seek approval from Congress to act against the Assad regime’s use of weapons.
A poll released by NBC News before the announcement found that 50% of Americans opposed military intervention, while 42% supported attacking Syria. The poll also found that 58% of Americans thought chemical weapons by any country crossed a line, and the US should respond forcefully.
In a series of interviews on the Sunday television news shows, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the White House had reason to believe sarin gas had been shot by regime forces, killing some 1,400.
Kerry said he was confident that Congress would give Obama its backing for a military strike against Syria. But the former senator also said the president has authority to act on his own if Congress doesn’t give its approval.
The Assad regime has denied using chemical weapons, calling such claims blatant lies.