British ministers reportedly consulting lawyers over Israel Iran strike

By Jennifer Lipman, May 23, 2012
An Iranian missile installation

An Iranian missile installation

The British Government has reportedly consulted lawyers over its options if fighting breaks out between Israel and Iran.

In Baghdad later today representatives from the five Security Council nations and Germany will meet Iranian officials to discuss the regime's nuclear ambitions.

But according to a BBC report, the British government has been examining its options for if the negotiations do not achieve any progress.

A report by Nick Robinson said ministers have begun taking legal advice on what Britain's role would be if a confrontation took place between Israel and Iran.

Israel has refused to rule out a strike on Iran to prevent it from gaining nuclear capabilities.

Mr Robinson said that the government's law officers were considering the legality of a range of choices, from supporting Israeli action diplomatically to dispatching Royal Navy ships to the region. The latter would most probably be a move designed to protect the Iran-controlled Straits of Hormuz – the gateway for a fifth of the world's oil.

Last updated: 9:38am, May 23 2012