LONDON — President Obama's decision to seek congressional approval for a military strike on Syria could open the door to another vote by the British Parliament, which rejected such intervention, senior officials here suggested Sunday.
French lawmakers also seized on Obama's decision as an argument for holding their own vote on armed intervention in Syria.
The delay before a possible strike as Obama makes his case to U.S. lawmakers could give their British counterparts time to consider new evidence pointing toward the Syrian government's culpability in gassing rebel-held neighborhoods in Damascus.
"It opens a very important new opportunity," the chairman of the parliamentary intelligence committee, Malcolm Rifkind, told the BBC. Rifkind, a former British defense secretary, supports force as an option in responding to the Syrian government's alleged chemical attack.
He said Prime Minister David Cameron and opposition leader Ed Miliband should now agree to revive the matter in the House of Commons, which dealt Cameron a shocking defeat Thursday by rejecting his request for an endorsement, in principle, of a military strike against Syrian President Bashar Assad.