Syria special

Today's batting order for the Syria debates in Lords and Commons should be as follows:

1430: Prayers.

1435: Mr Speaker calls Order, Order. Followed by what is expected to be a short procedural motion from the Leader of the House, Andrew Lansley, setting out the timetable for the debate. It's unlikely that anyone will force a vote, but you never know. There might be points of order, or complaints that the recall of parliament was unnecessary.

After that the Speaker will announce his selection of amendments and then David Cameron will open the debate. There's expected to be a time limit on backbench speeches - probably six minutes. Nick Clegg will wind up for the Government, with the votes beginning at 22:00 BST. There will be votes on an amendment and a substantive motion - and watch out for the usual round of double-voting, with MPs abstaining by voting in both lobbies… always a headache for late-night vote analysis. The Government has a majority of 77, (excluding the Speaker and deputies, and the non-attending Sinn Fein MPs) but some MPs may not have managed to get back to Westminster.

The Lords convene for their debate at 15:30 - and are expected to continue till 23:00. But theirs is a "take note" motion, and there is unlikely to be a vote. The list of peers down to speak includes the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, and the Iraq war-era Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith. Also listed, Lord West of Spithead, Lord Paddy Ashdown and the usual list of ex cabinet ministers and top generals.

More to follow as the debate unfolds; I'm off to the Press Gallery.

Mark D'Arcy Article written by Mark D'Arcy Mark D'Arcy Parliamentary correspondent

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