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Defence review: PM urged to cut armed forces and fund long-term security

UK army recruits in training

Defence review: PM urged to cut armed forces and fund long-term security

As Boris Johnson announces a defence review, pacifists have called for cuts to military spending and funding for tackling long-term security threats.

The Peace Pledge Union (PPU) called on ministers to reduce the size of the armed forces, cut military spending and focus on addressing real security threats such as poverty and climate change.

The Prime Minister is to annouce a review of defence policy that is expected to report later in the year. There have been contradictory reports in today's newspapers about whether Johnson is likely to increase or reduce the size of the armed forces.

Yesterday, "Defence" Secretary Ben Wallace confirmed government plans to purchase new nuclear warheads, after they were revealed by the Trump administration in the US, despite the lack of debate in Parliament.

The PPU pointed out that the UK already has the seventh highest military spending in the world. They added that high military spending would not make us any safer.

Symon Hill, Campaigns Manager of the Peace Pledge Union, said:

"If you're struggling to make ends meet, queueing at a food bank or waiting months for a hospital appointment, then your life won't be made more secure by people with guns. The UK’s already high military spending diverts vital funds from things that really make us secure.

“Despite the focus on the spat between Dominic Cummings and military bosses, they are both committed to a hopelessly outdated approach to security and the naive believe that deep-seated problems can be solved with bombs.

“Armed forces don’t make us safer. They make the whole world less safe. As we speak, the RAF is training Saudi pilots who are involved in bombing civilians in Yemen. The disastrous and wasteful wars in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan have made the world even more unstable. The only thing that is protected by high military spending is the profits of arms dealers.”

As a pacifist organisation, the PPU does not support any armed forces, and regards cuts to armed forces as a step in the right direction.