August 7, 2018 / 2:57 PM / 6 months ago

UK will always be 'tier one' military power, says defence secretary

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Secretary of State for Defence Gavin Williamson arrives in Downing Street in London, June 26, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will always be a “tier one” military power, defence secretary Gavin Williamson said on Tuesday.

In June, Prime Minister Theresa May said a report that she had questioned the United Kingdom’s status as a “tier one” military power was incorrect. But when asked directly she declined to repeat the phrase, saying only that she wanted Britain to be a “leading defence nation.”

“Britain is a major global actor, we have always been a tier one military power and we always will be a tier one military power,” Williamson told the Atlantic Council think tank in Washington.

Reporting by Kate Holton, Writing by Kylie MacLellan

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