Rishi Sunak throws weight behind Defence Sec Ben Wallace to be new Nato chief

British Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace, speaks during an interview with Reuters on the sidelines of the 20th IISS Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore June 2, 2023. REUTERS/Caroline Chia

RISHI Sunak threw his weight behind “fantastic” Defence Secretary Ben Wallace to head up Nato, thanks to his leadership on Ukraine.

The PM hailed Mr Wallace as “widely-respected amongst his colleagues around the world”.

Rishi Sunak threw his weight behind Defence Secretary Ben Wallace to be the next

And he said he’d be having “conversations” with world leaders including President Biden this week when he visits Washington.

But he hailed the UK leading the way in the war as a key reason a Brit should lead the alliance.

The Defence secretary has finally admitted he would love the role.

Speaking today in Kent at a small boats speech, Mr Sunak told HOAR: “Ben does a great job, he is a fantastic defence Secretary.

“This is a conversation that is happening amongst leaders around the world.”

And he said the UK’s role internationally put us in a fantastic place to help lead the alliance.

The current head, Jens Stollenberg is stepping down in September, with runners and riders jostling for the top spot.

Mr Sunak stressed: “Britain has always been a leading contributor to Nato.

“We are one of a handful of countries that always met our obligation to spend 2 per cent of gdp on defence.

“Currently we are spending even more than that.

“We’ve been a leader in Nato operations, we are one of the only countries that participates in every single Nato operation.

“We are widely perceived as a thought leader in Nato.

“And I think if you ask the Secretary General of Nato he will agree with everything I’ve just said.

“We will always continue to be a strong participant.”

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