David Anderson – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Prime Minister

The below Parliamentary question was asked by David Anderson on 2016-01-20.

To ask the Prime Minister, if he will disclose a summary of the government advice on the legality of the drone strike that killed Reyaad Khan in the manner set out in Part 6 of the Cabinet Manual.

Mr David Cameron

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Hornsey and Wood Green (Ms West) on 21 January 2016, UIN 22720.

By long-standing convention under successive Governments the Law Officers’ advice is not published. The legal basis for the airstrike against Reyaad Khan is set out in the Government’s Memorandum to the Joint Committee on Human Rights.

The Government’s legal position in relation to UK airstrikes against Daesh in Syria is reflected in my response to the Foreign Affairs Committee Report on the extension of offensive British military operations to Syria.

The current Memorandum of Understanding together with the Justice and Security Act 2013 provides the necessary scope for the ISC to conduct robust oversight of those matters that are within its statutory remit.