Six Typhoon jets from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire have been deployed on Thursday morning to Cyprus in response to the heightened tension in Syria.
The Typhoon interceptor fast jets were sent to RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus as a “prudent and precautionary measure,” the Ministry of Defence said.
An MoD spokesman said: “This is purely a prudent and precautionary measure to ensure the protection of UK interests and the defence of our Sovereign Base Areas at a time of heightened tension in the wider region.
“This is a movement of defensive assets operating in an air-to-air role only. They are not deploying to take part in any military action against Syria.
“The PM has made clear no decision has been taken on our response and the Government has said that there will be a Commons vote before direct military involvement.”
The UK is pushing for the UN Security Council to adopt a resolution which would authorise measures to protect civilians in Syria following suspected chemical weapons attacks.
But Syrian ally Russia is refusing to agree to the resolution and is reportedly sending an anti-submarine ship and a missile cruiser to the eastern Mediterranean.
— Update at 11.30pm: MPs have voted against possible military action against Syria, ruling out British involvement in any US-led attacks.