Boris Johnson at odds with British Army chief as he defends cuts to troop numbers

The Defence Secretary pointed to the fact that the spending review had taken place before Russia’s invasion, and warned that Vladimir Putin was now “very, very dangerous on the world stage”.

“The world is less secure than it was two, three years ago and is not looking likely to change for the rest of the decade,” he said. “That is the moment, in the middle of the decade, to say we should commit to increased funding.”

But Mr Johnson’s spokesman told reporters there was not yet a need to think about a new settlement, saying: “We are still of the view that the approach we’ve set out with this massive increase in defence funding is the right one.

“Because it would be wrong, given what we are seeing play out in front of our eyes, to focus solely on numbers when we can see the impact that the latest technologies, equipment, training, intelligence, are having. And we are confident that we can do both.”

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