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The work of UK military diplomats has been praised by Defence Secretary Michael Fallon, at the annual gathering of Defence Attachés.

The Defence Secretary hosted British Defence Attachés in London where he outlined the UK’s priorities for 2017, praised the work undertaken, and encouraged the Defence Attachés to take advantage of Britain’s global network, helping to create further security and prosperity for Britain.

The UK underlined its global role last year with the creation of three new regional hubs for defence engagement. With defence staff now established in the Gulf, Asia Pacific and West Africa, the UK is able to advance its interests in defence and security. Further Defence Attaché posts were also created in Albania, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Georgia, strengthening Britain’s commitment to its NATO allies and European partners, while a new Defence section was established in Africa covering Senegal, The Gambia, Mali and Niger.

The expansion of the overseas network is a key commitment of the Government’s 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR), which made defence engagement overseas a key task.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: “The UK’s 120 Defence Attachés work to protect and advance Britain’s interests abroad, strengthening relationships with our allies and advancing defence and security partnerships.

“Britain’s new Defence Staffs are now up and running, underlining our global role, promoting the UK abroad and furthering security and prosperity at home.”

Outlining the priorities for 2017, which include pressing home the Coalition’s advantage against Daesh, Sir Michael highlighted the UK’s commitment to European and global security. By meeting NATO’s target for two per cent GDP spend on defence, the UK puts itself in at the forefront of defence and security. Together with leading NATO’s VJTF, spearheading the force with some 3,000 troops, and deployment to Estonia in spring the UK has underlined its commitment to the defence of NATO.

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2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) Defence Attaché Estonia International NATO Sir Michael Fallon UK

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