A SWINDON MP has defended last night’s missile strike on Syria - but opposition politicians have accused the government of lacking a clear strategy.

RAF jets were among the bombers used to drop missiles on sites believed to be connected to the Syrian regime’s alleged chemical weapons programme.

The joint strikes by US, French and UK forces last night were launched in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack in Douma, near Damascus, by forces loyal to President Assad.

Robert Buckland, MP for South Swindon and one of the Conservative government’s legal chiefs, said: “The Prime Minister took the right decision. After diplomatic channels via the United Nations were blocked by Russia, we have rightly decided to use proportionate force as we try to uphold the international rules-based system and prevent the use of chemical weapons from becoming the norm.”

Army veteran Sarah Church, Labour's candidate for the South Swindon parliamentary seat, accused the UK government and its allies of lacking a "thought-through plan".

She told the Swindon Advertiser: "This air strike was a gesture that does not sit within a coherent strategy to address the war in Syria or President Assad’s use of chemical weapons.

"To uphold international rules, we also need to follow those rules and to ensure any military action forms part of a properly thought-through plan. What is the plan? Where is the strategy? Both appear to be missing."

She followed Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who earlier branded the the air strikes legally questionable. He said: “Bombs won’t save lives or bring about peace.

“This legally questionable action risks escalating further, as US defense secretary James Mattis has admitted, an already devastating conflict and therefore makes real accountability for war crimes and use of chemical weapons less, not more likely.”