U.K. Says 3,500 Troops to Be on Standby for No-deal Brexit

With 14 weeks to go before Britain’s departure from the bloc, it remains unclear whether the country will leave with a deal or crash out without one

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May attends a press conference with Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg at 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain, June 21, 2018
\ Henry Nicholls/ REUTERS

British Defense Secretary says around 3,500 troops will be on standby in support of the government to help deal with any disruptions in the event of a “no-deal” Brexit.

Gavin Williamson says that while the military hasn’t had a formal request to help, “what we will do is have 3,500 service personnel held at readiness — including regulars and reserves — in order to support any government department on any contingencies they may need.”

The comments came as Britain’s Cabinet stepped up preparations for the possibility of a disorderly Brexit. With 14 weeks to go before Britain’s departure from the bloc, it remains unclear whether the country will leave with a deal or crash out without one — an outcome that risks touching off gridlock at ports and shortages of goods.