UK to deepen defence relationship with Bulgaria to help tackle security threats in SEE

During the first visit to Bulgaria by a UK Cabinet member since the UK’s Brexit referendum, British defence secretary Michael Fallon said he was committed to helping Bulgaria deal with increased militarisation in the Crimea and the Black Sea, and greater Russian military transfers through the Bosporus.

His visit to Sofia on September 26, alongside a trade delegation of leading UK defence companies, was the first by a UK defence secretary in more than 20 years, and Fallon said both security and defence industry would benefit.

Fallon said the decision to leave the EU does not in any way diminish the UK’s unwavering commitment to world security.

“A vote to leave the EU will not change Britain’s commitment to European and global security,” Fallon said.

“We are more determined than ever to uphold our defence responsibilities which is why we are doing more in the world today, not less. The UK is a global power with global influence and we’re determined to continue using it for the global good,” Fallon said.

Fallon met his Bulgarian counterpart Nikolai Nenchev and confirmed that the UK will send a Type 45 Destroyer to the Black Sea in Spring 2017 as a demonstration of the UK’s on-going commitment to support Bulgaria, Nato’s southern flank, and wider shared security interests. This follows on from the UK gift of 40 Land Rovers to the Bulgarian Border Force this summer.

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(Photo: Bulgarian Ministry of Defence)