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Watch in Full: Tom Swarbrick interviews Chief of Defence Staff General Sir Nick Carter

28 February 2021, 11:47 | Updated: 28 February 2021, 15:35

By Seán Hickey

Tom Swarbrick spoke exclusively to the head of the British armed forces General Sir Nick Carter and you can watch the full interview here.

In an LBC exclusive, head of the British armed forces General Sir Nick Carter spoke in a wide ranging interview with Tom Swarbrick.

He told Swarbrick on Sunday that the UK "shouldn't lose sight of the importance of the NATO alliance" as we look to "tilt" towards the Indo-Pacific region in a post-Brexit Britain.

He assured Tom that it is "about getting the right balance" between your current allies and developing soft and hard power relations with potential future allies.

Sir Nick stressed that Europe is "at the heart" of a strong UK and we must remember that.

When quizzed on China, the Chief of the Defence Staff accepted that the rising superpower is "undoubtedly a challenge" to British foreign relations going forward, but stopped short of describing them as a threat.

Read More: Military should step up ‘more often’ in UK crisis response, General Sir Nick Carter tells LBC

General Sir Nick Carter spoke exclusively to Tom Swarbrick
General Sir Nick Carter spoke exclusively to Tom Swarbrick. Picture: PA

He acknowledged the armed forces' efforts during the coronavirus pandemic, telling Tom that it was "all hands to the pump to try and fix," the situation.

Sir Nick was assured that the forces did all they could to ensure as few "strategic setbacks" during the pandemic as possible.

He described the pandemic response as "a remarkable achievement that we should all be very proud of."

When asked whether the armed forces should be used more often in civic society, he was reluctant. "We're here if we're needed, but it shouldn't be our default setting."