New Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has yet to get to grips with the complexities of the defence budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond has suggested.
Appearing before the Commons Treasury Committee, Mr Hammond denied he was cutting funding to the armed forces and indicated he would be sympathetic to a request for extra cash.
His intervention comes amid signs of an extraordinary briefing war between the two ministers over proposed cuts to the military to plug a black hole in the Ministry of Defence (MoD) finances.
In the latest twist, The Times reported that Mr Hammond had been banned from using a fleet of RAF jets and helicopters until the Treasury settled a bill for his official travel with the MoD.
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Tomorrow's Times front page: MoD bans Hammond from using its planes pic.twitter.com/Q0Njpd5dZx— The Times of London (@thetimes) December 5, 2017