The former UK chancellor George Osborne has said that the UK shares the blame for the terrible tragedy unfolding in Syria.

Speaking at an emergency debate in the House of Commons on the events in Aleppo, he said there had been "multiple opportunities" to intervene in Syria, referring to parliament's decision not to take military action in 2013 after Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime was accused of using chemical weapons.

"Let's be clear now: if you do not shape the world, you will be shaped by it. We are beginning to see the price of not intervening," he said.

In the 2013 vote, the House of Commons voted by a majority of 13 to reject military action. MPs voted 285-272 against the UK joining President Barack Obama's proposed US air strikes. The air strikes never did take place due to political opposition in the US.

Osborne said the massacres that were being reported out of Aleppo had not emerged out of the blue. "The Syrian civil war has been raging since 2011 and therefore it is something that we should have foreseen and done something about," he said.

George Osborne
George Osborne hits out on Britain's failure to act over Syria Getty Images

"I think we are deceiving ourselves in this parliament if we believe that we have no responsibility for what has happened in Syria. The tragedy in Aleppo did not come out of a vacuum — it was created by a vacuum. A vacuum of Western leadership, of American leadership, of British leadership."

Osborne, in one of his first Commons addresses since losing his cabinet post, went a step further and said that he personally took some responsibility "as someone who sat on the national security council throughout those years".

He added: "We all know the price of intervention. We are now beginning to learn the price of not intervening."