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James Arbuthnot MP

Defence Select Committee Chairman

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Stories involving James Arbuthnot

James Arbuthnot to retire

James Arbuthnot has announced that he will stand down at the next election. The Tory MP for North East Hampshire, who has served for the last 14 years, has said he wants to take on “new challenges”.  

The 58-year-old said that as his Chairmanship of the Defence Select Committee comes to an end at the end of this Parliament, he believes it is the right time to step down.

"Until then I shall continue to represent the interests of my constituents to the best of my ability. I am totally convinced that under David Cameron’s courageous leadership Conservatives have the best possible chance of winning the next election and serving the best interests of the country.”


David Cameron faced unrest from his own benches after his announcement that the decision on renewing Trident was being delayed for five years. Sir Peter Tapsell accused Cameron of "subordinating the national interest" to keep the coalition intact, while defence committee chair James Arbuthnot described the decision as "a real gamble".


MPs criticise 'hasty' defence review

The strategic defence review has come under criticism from MPs and former armed forces chiefs. Lord West (below, left) claimed defence cuts would mean the military "will not be ready for the unexpected", whilst Sir Richard Dannatt (below, right) has said the strategic defence and security review was "inevitably rushed". The defence select committee said 20% cuts could jeopardise the armed forces' ability to carry out military operations. The review comes amid reports the government is considering delaying the replacement of the Trident nuclear deterrent.