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Fallon pledge to the Armed Forces

The Armed Forces will get the resources and equipment they need, the Defence Secretary has said.

Michael Fallon's pledge comes amid controversy over the lack of commitment by any of the main political parties to meet the target to spend 2% of gross domestic product (GDP) on the military beyond the next financial year.

Mr Fallon insisted the Conservatives are committed to defence.

"It is an absolute promise: the Armed Forces will get the resources and equipment they need and the regulars will not be cut further," he told the Sunday Telegraph.

"We have proved that by our investment in new kit of all kinds, including two new aircraft carriers, seven hunter-killer submarines, 600 armoured vehicles and new joint-strike fighters."

"We are spending 2% at the moment. We are going to be spending 2% again next year."

Former Cabinet minister Owen Paterson is set to become the latest figure to weigh into the debate on military spending.

In a speech this week, the Sunday Telegraph reported he will accuse the Government of "succumbing to temptation" to outsource national defence to Europe and Nato.

The approach risks damaging the "special relationship" with the United States, he is expected to say.

Earlier this month David Cameron was urged by the head of Nato to demonstrate continued "leadership" within the alliance amid concerns that Britain's defence spending is set to drop below the 2% target.

"We appreciate the leadership that the UK shows in the alliance, and we count on leadership also in the future," Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said.

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