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Yesterday in the House of Commons, the Secretary of State for Defence, Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP, gave a Statement on security in the Middle East following the killing of the Iranian General Qasem Soleimani.
John Baron MP asked,
“Very few countries’ hands are completely clean in the region, and part of the problem has been the lack of an overarching and coordinated peace process, particularly now the Iranian nuclear deal is in tatters. Does the Secretary of State agree that, from our point of view, the elephant in the room is the need to spend much more on our defence and diplomatic capabilities, not only to signal to the world our intent to better defend our interests, but also to hold greater sway with our allies, particularly the US, in this part of the world?”
The Secretary of State suggested that this was a very important point, that diplomacy and defence do not come cheap, and that sometimes defence also includes helping other countries which can not help themselves.
Afterwards, Mr Baron said,
“Britain’s voice would carry more weight in the world if we invested more in our diplomatic and armed services. In recent years both have been seen as easy targets for spending cutbacks, and I hope the new Government will quickly move to address these shortcomings – not least to send the right signal, to allies and potential adversaries alike, that Britain is not retreating from the international stage.”
Image: UK Parliament
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