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Monday, 23 November 2015

UK to increase defense spending by 30% in the midst of massive social spending cuts


The British government says it will boost anti-terrorism spending by 30 percent, including buying new stealth fighter jets. The announcement comes on the eve of expected massive spending cuts that could decimate public services.

The decision to increase security spending was made by Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne on Sunday, who said he wants to make sure that London is capable of doing its part in the fight against terrorism.

"We are going to step up the aircraft carrier punch of the United Kingdom. We are going to make sure that when these aircraft carriers are available they are going to have planes that can fly from them in force," Osborne told BBC television.

"By 2023, we will be able to have 24 of these jets, some of the most powerful in the world, the F-35, on the decks of these carriers."

To pay for increased anti-terrorism spending, Osborne plans to slash social welfare spending in what the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is calling the most aggressive austerity plan amongst the world's developed nations between now and 2020.

The UK chancellor also refused to rule out introducing spending cuts to the police force. "Every public service has to make sure it is spending money well," he told the BBC.

Osborne is expected to announce an estimated £20 billion ($30 billion) worth of budget cuts on Wednesday, as the Conservative government aims to run a budget surplus by 2020.

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