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Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson met with the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed, and his Emirati counterpart, Mohammed Ahmad Al Bowardi, reaffirming the ‘historic and very successful’ defence relationship.

The Defence Secretary also commended the role the UAE, a Global Coalition partner, has played in the fight against Daesh.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

“Our long-standing and deep relationship with our Gulf partners epitomises Britain’s global outlook. Be it through our involvement in the Duqm port project in Oman or the opening of the Naval Support Facility in Bahrain, we are committed to regional security and stability.

Gulf security is our security and what happens in the Gulf has a direct impact on the security of the British public at home.”

Williamson met with Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence in the UAE.

According to a press release:

“The Defence Secretary also visited personnel on board HMS Middleton and HMS Bangor, which were alongside at Port Zayed. Mr Williamson reiterated how grateful he was for the access and facilities that the UAE provides the UK. The UAE is the most visited port globally by the Royal Navy, highlighting the value Britain places on this relationship in its support to regional stability and security.

In Oman, Mr Williamson met the Minister Responsible For Defence, Badr bin Saud al Busaidi, to discuss the potential embedding of Omani officers to work and train alongside UK Armed Forces as Loan Service Personnel. It will be a unique arrangement for the UK as it does not currently have any other Loan Service Personnel embedded with our world renowned Armed Forces.”

The officials also reviewed the work taking place at the Duqm port facilities which, in time, will host UK warships and is large enough to welcome the aircraft carriers HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales.

24 COMMENTS

  1. UK debt is now over £2 TRILLION! Time to sop this nonsense. You could not run your homes like this. Time for cut backs.

    • We are a net importer of oil and gas now TH.

      Foolish, unnecessary but true.

      So until that changes, I think this is a rather a sensible use of funds.

    • What does sop mean?

      Funding national security is not a nice to have or something optional. I do agree cut backs in government spending are required but this should be targeted at overseas aid which is often wasted in order to meet a 0.7% target, and the enormous public sector pension funding gap. If civil servants where brought in line with everyone else, where they receive what they put in to their pension like everyone else, the UK’s liabilities would drop dramatically.

      • Sop is the name for an Arab who walks with a Camel …… We used to have them in WW1………. Sop With Camel…………. I’m right Aren’t I…..?

    • It is high but a little context please.

      70% of it is owned by UK banks and pension funds, including the Bank of England (which the Govt owns). In fact 25% of the total debt is with the BofE, so the Govt owes itself £500bn. I doubt that will ever be repaid, just written off somehow in the future. The interest payments to UK banks and pensions help fund people’s retirement.

      Yes the total debt needs to peak over the next few years then decline as part of a balanced public spending policy. Just cutting everything willy nilly doesn’t help as that will impact on employment rates, the tax take, benefit payments, and households’ ability to spend.

      Defence has its place in all this – personally I think we can afford 2.5% of GDP, or a higher amount than we spend now for those who do not like the link with GDP.

  2. “RFA Cardigan Bay leads Minehunters in the Gulf”-that is one impressive minehunter at the rear of the flotilla!!

  3. TH, if you are ex armed forces, join us:

    Veterans for Peace – http://vfpuk.org/

    We are organising a number of anti war protests which are attended by members of the public as well. You would be more than welcomed to attend these processions. Although the media doesn’t cover these demonstrations, they are occurring and hundreds and often thousands attend and politicians are made aware.

    • Oh look THs other account. Somehow and unsurprisingly praising his views that the Military is unnecessary.
      The media doesn’t cover these demonstrations. Well that would be because they do not exist or wouldn’t even be large enough to notice running down mainstreet in rush hour.
      A complete load of bull that the Christmas cabal of red and green anti-military socialists and progressives, who make up the media miss any opportunity to bash the Military or their country. That is all the loathsome creatures live for. That and to advocate stealing money they did not earn and to take away Liberty they do not cherish. All in the name of what they consider to be”, for the people,” or because of “feelings”.

    • TH is certainly not as mil, as his off repeated gibberish and lack of understanding of military matters constantly shows when he starts to type. And if you read his posts Mr boring veterans for peace, then you would also see that he is certainly spent no time in the military…..but I am presuming you did more than 5 minutes before deciding the job you chose was a little to nasty for you and you left.

    • Procession or demonstration – which is it?
      Protesting against what war exactly?
      Who are you protesting against?
      As far as I am aware the U.K. isn’t actively engaged in any wars at the moment.
      I applaud you getting out there though, practicing your democratic right to protest and your right of freedom of speech. I forget how those rights were achieved though, in the U.K. and around the world? What I do see though are people in the world struggling to have the same rights you currently enjoy, being repressed, gassed by there own government in some cases – but hey, your not really interested in that are you.
      TH – good for you, we need more SME’s creating work – long may you continue.
      £2Tn in debt? Don’t see your point? Most countries are in debt, governments aren’t like households (but if they were mortgage is also a debt but we don’t stay awake every night worrying about it’s size) , debt is used for many things, we are servicing debt at low rates, even running (admittedly for one month only) at a current account surplus.

  4. Omani officers embedded as Loan Device Personnel interesting.

    What’s the difference between that and the common practise of exchange postings, especially with US and Australian forces. Are we borrowing them?? Is our manpower that bad!

  5. Thanks Harold. I have never been in the armed forces. I have my own SME and create employment for others. What really saddens me and more and more others is seeing our hard earned incomes taxed and then those taxes frittered by a government on posing and flouncing around the world showing off. Syria is nothing to do with this country. Trillions of debt is. It’s time to cut back heavily on government spending on vanity projects and to face reality. I ignore the kids on this site who really don’t know the cost of anything. However, I constantly email my MP calling for cuts in the bloated defence budget. I voted for him and he knows it. He is also a Tory. I respect your age and ex service credentials. I especially respect the work of Veterans for Peace UK. We have members near us who wear white poppies each year and who have been in the army. People of principle.

    • TH please don’t refer to me as a kid.
      I respect your opinion that defence should be cut, you have a right to that view. However I disagree. Wether this tension and potential military action is right or wrong, for me it is highlighting a worrying fact. If we are dragged into a major conflict (sometimes no matter how much you try to avoid something it comes to you anyway) our armed forces are just not equipped for a sustained peer on peer conflict. Too small, lacking in depth, and low on ammunition are but a few issues. I do think our forces are great and we have fantastic kit in areas, but it’s hollowed out because of cuts. OUR WORLD is now dangerous and we have to be prepared for anything…. or we die! The idea of further cuts in the current climate is just madness of the most reckless kind. Wether you like it or not we have a standing in the world and with that we have commitments, that puts us in the firing lines so we must invest in greater capability within reason and hope we never have to use it, chances are growing that we will. Or do you want us to step back completely and become a minor backwater nation where our economy shrinks and we have no say on anything?

  6. Its to do with Terms and Conditions.
    Loan service usually means you wear the uniform of the Armed services you are loaned to and come under their rules.
    Exchange posts mean you keep your uniform and remain under your own countries rules and regs.

    It also has lots of tax and bonus implications with regards to your pay at the end of the month.

  7. Its to do with Terms and Conditions.
    Loan service usually means you wear the uniform of the Armed services you are loaned to and come under their rules.
    Exchange posts mean you keep your uniform and remain under your own countries rules and regs.

    It also has lots of tax and bonus implications with regards to your pay at the end of the month.

  8. All, please stop rising up to TH’s taunts. It doesn’t become anyone to do so. You’re just wasting your time. Anyway, I presume that when he talks of marching against war he means the war that Russia is waging against Syrians and Ukraine, doesn’t he?

  9. Young Daniele, when you grow up, money will become more relevant to you. When you have to work hard to earn it, your views will change. I don’t see glory in the spending of hard earned tax payer pounds on weapons of war. That doesn’t make a country great. But why does the UK need such vanity anyway? It should be spending its money wisely and in caring for its citizens. And it should also keep its nose out of other people’s affairs. Other countries do, so should this. Indeed, neutrality would benefit the UK as it had done elsewhere. You have much to learn.

    • I seem to recall that Britain did the same back in 1939 and we know what happened there. Peace in our time is a fantasy so stop dreaming.

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