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Defence Secretary's NATO Address

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace addressed parliamentarians from across the NATO Alliance at the NATO Parliamentary Assembly on Monday 14 October 2019.

On 14 October 2019, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace addressed the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. Broadly, his speech focused on the enduring values of the alliance, including the pursuit of freedom and mutual self-defence, and the “unique balance between democracy and military”.

However, Wallace was keen to state that the “doctrine of mutual self-defence cannot be maintained without the constant reaffirmation of our consent” and that “upholding the articles … takes investment and innovation” especially because “non-military means of achieving political and strategic goals have grown and … exceeded the power of force of weapons in their effectiveness” and the increasing threat posed by hybrid warfare.

The speech was used to announce the following:

  • The UK will soon solidify plans for a National Cyber Force to ensure a stronger presence in the digital arena of geopolitical conflict.
  • NATO must invest in space capabilities because strategic competitors such as China and Russia are exploring the development of offensive capabilities in Space.
  • Last month’s spending review gave the Ministry of Defence an extra £2.3bn, taking its overall budget to £41.23bn, the largest budget in Europe.

A full transcript of the speech can be found here.


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