INTELLIGENCE and security briefings on Syria have been used by the Government to manipulate Labour MPs, the Commons has heard.

The SNP's Stewart McDonald (Glasgow South) claimed he was informed by several sources that the Government has been "selectively offering" briefings by the Prime Minister's national security adviser.

He added they appear to have been offered to Labour MPs who are "sympathetic" to the Government's position.

The UK joined the US and France in launching missile strikes on Syrian regime chemical warfare facilities after scores of people were thought to have died in a suspected chemical attack on the rebel-held town of Douma.

Mr McDonald, raising a point of order in the House of Commons, said: "It's been brought to my attention by several sources that the Government has been selectively offering intelligence and security briefings by the Prime Minister's national security adviser on the current situation in Syria and the UK military response to it.

"These briefings appear to have been offered to members of the Labour opposition not on the basis of privy counsellor status but on the basis of those Opposition members who are sympathetic to the Government's position.

"That leads to concerns that the Government is using intelligence briefings to manipulate Parliament and to bolster its own case for its behaviour on the Opposition benches - not on security terms, but on politics."

He asked John Bercow if such an approach was right, with the Speaker noting he understood why the MP was concerned although it was for the Government to decide with whom it shares intelligence material.

Mr McDonald added: "My point is, you preside over a Parliament which the Government has done everything to sideline since last week and it's now been brought to my attention that they're using intelligence and security briefings to manipulate Opposition Members of Parliament, not to inform them but to potentially bolster their own case."

Mr Bercow, in his reply, said: "Sometimes in life a problem does not have a solution, and I think this might be an example.

"At any rate if there is a solution, it isn't in my hands to provide it."

Mr Bercow reiterated two emergency debates on Syria had been granted this week to "try to help the House".