David Cameron has overruled the foreign secretary Philip Hammond after he appeared to rule out UK involvement in air strikes against Islamic State (Isis) forces in Syria.

Hammond made his remarks at a press conference in Berlin, but Cameron’s spokesman later said that as far as the use of British air power was concerned Cameron had not ruled anything out. The spokesman said he was clarifying Hammond’s remarks, insisting the foreign secretary was referring to the possibility of air strikes against Bashar al-Assad.

Asked by Reuters after his meeting with German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier about Barack Obama’s proposal for air strikes against Isis in Syria, Hammond replied: “Let me be clear: Britain will not be taking part in any air strikes in Syria. We have already had that discussion in our parliament last year and we won’t be revisiting that position.” […]