‘Put it to a vote’: Starmer demands MPs decide on troop cuts

The Labour leader accused the prime minister of breaking an election promise to maintain the size of the Armed Forces and told him to have the “courage” to test if MPs backed him.

Sir Keir ridiculed Mr Johnson’s claim not to be making cuts, telling him: “Only this prime minister could suggest a reduction from 82,000 to 72,000 is somehow not a cut.”

And he pointed to the words of Tobias Ellwood – the Tory chair of the Commons defence committee – who had warned Conservatives would oppose the move, given the chance.

Mr Ellwood had said the cuts “if tested by a parliamentary vote, I do not believe would pass, adding: “Not me – his own MPs.”

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