Moscow/Sputnik/UNI: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson refuted on Sunday media reports about the planned cuts in the size of the British army.
Earlier in the day, The Sunday Times reported that UK defense chiefs mulled slashing army numbers to 60,000-65,000 and leasing one of the Royal Navy’s aircraft carriers to the United States to cut expenses. The media also noted that the newly published Tory manifesto removed ex-Prime Minister Theresa May’s commitment to maintain the size of the armed forces, albeit still vowing to keep defense spending at more than 2 per cent of GDP.
"On the armed services, as I have made clear repeatedly, we will not be cutting our armed services in any form – we will be maintaining the size of our armed services," Johnson told reporters after the Conservative Party manifesto launch, broadcast live.
He pointed out that the UK actually intended to increase funding for the armed forces by 0.5 percent above inflation every year.
The prime minister also praised the nation’s armed forces, describing them as the "most admired export that this country has in some parts of the world."