Defence Strategy To Be Debated

The future of Britain's armed forces are soon to be considered by Defence chiefs and government at the National Security Council meeting.

The meeting will lay out options for the upcoming strategic defence and security review with decisions finalised at a later date.

The review, due next month, will mark Afghanistan as a priority.

Due to be released on Thursday, the think tank Policy Exchange report, suggests that by building up its bank of reservists the army could save money.

One of the authors of the report, and a former commander of the SAS, Lt Col Richard Williams, told Today: "If you are doing a complex intervention such as southern Iraq or Afghanistan, you get an awful lot from somebody who has been a bank clerk or has an alternative employment and is not a full-time soldier."

This week, Foreign Secretary William Hague said the defence budget, which over-committed by £38bn over the next decade, must be dealt with.

No date has been set for the meeting that will take the final decisions.

The last review in 1998, took more than a year.


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