Cameron Seeks More U.K. Investment in Drones, Special Forces

Prime Minister David Cameron said more of the U.K.’s defense budget should be spent on drones and special forces in a bid to counter the terrorist threat from Islamic extremists.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announced in last week’s budget that U.K. spending on defense will equal the NATO target of 2 percent of gross domestic product through the end of the decade.

“Now we know how much we will spend, what matters next is how we spend it,” Cameron said in an e-mailed statement Monday. “I have tasked the defense and security chiefs to look specifically at how we do more to counter the threat posed by ISIL and Islamist extremism. This could include more spy planes, drones and special forces.”

The government is carrying out a strategic defense and security review that’s due to be published before the end of the year and will prioritize the resources needed to protect the U.K. from evolving threats.

This month, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon called on lawmakers to consider approving attacks on Islamic State, the Sunni insurgent group also known as ISIL, in Syria as well as Iraq. Britain last week warned against travel to Tunisia, saying another terrorist attack there is “highly likely” after a beachfront shooting in late June in which 30 U.K. citizens were killed.