Tory Minister Smiles Over 'Embarrassing' Trident Missile Misfire

Victoria Atkins insisted she still had "complete confidence" in the UK's nuclear deterrent.
Victoria Atkins smiles as she is quizzed by Kay Burley
Victoria Atkins smiles as she is quizzed by Kay Burley
Sky News

A Tory minister struggled to contain a smile as she was asked about the latest “embarrassing” misfire by one of the UK’s Trident missiles.

Health secretary Victoria Atkins grinned as Kay Burley asked her about the incident on Sky News.

According to The Sun, the missile’s booster rockets failed after it was fired from the HMS Vanguard nuclear submarine and landed in the sea close to the launch site.

Defence secretary Grant Shapps was on board the vessel at the time of the malfunction.

It is the second misfire in a row for the American-made missiles after a previous test launch in 2016 resulted in the missile veering off course.

Burley told Atkins: “It was supposed to go something like 3,500 miles, it plopped at the side of the submarine. How embarrassing.”

As she tried to stifle a grin, the minister replied: “Well, we have complete confidence in the system.”

When Burley asked her why, Atkins smiled and said: “We are constrained by national security considerations here, but I am informed and I accept that that was an anomaly that was very event specific and we have complete confidence in the system.

“This is a really important part of our defence system and we as Conservatives fully support and understand the importance of a nuclear deterrent.”

Watch the exchange here:


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