Labour criticises cuts after leaked MoD report says army low on troops

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Labour has called for the government to devise “a proper defence strategy” and criticised “a decade of decline” after a leaked Ministry of Defence report said the army is running low on battle-ready soldiers.

The Daily Mail reported the Ministry of Defence’s “Infantry Battalion Soldier Strength Summary – January 2021” showed the prestigious Scots Guards, which has a working requirement of 603 troops, had just 339 soldiers available for operations.

Col Richard Kemp, a retired British army officer, blamed the manpower crisis on poor pay, inadequate living conditions, and the outsourcing of recruitment to Capita.

“Outsourcing recruiting to Capita was a disastrous decision, potential recruits faced months of unnecessary delays and struggled to meet a real soldier in the…

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