The US is reportedly planning to move nuclear warheads to the UK in response to the growing threat from Russia.
To reinforce the alliance, the Telegraph reports Pentagon documents reveal the nuclear weapons will be stationed at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk.
They are said to be three times the strength of the Hiroshima bomb.
Responding to the report, a spokesperson for the UK’s Ministry of Defence said: “It remains a longstanding UK and NATO policy to neither confirm nor deny the presence of nuclear weapons at a given location.”
US nuclear missiles were last held in the UK as recently as 2008, when they were removed as the Cold War threat from Russia had shrunk.
The nuclear weapons that could be located at the base are believed to be B61-12 gravity bombs, which can be deployed from fighter jets.
It’s part of a NATO programme to “develop and upgrade nuclear sites” in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Telegraph reports.
Earlier this week, General Sir Patrick Sanders, the outgoing head of the British Army, said its 74,000-strong ranks need to be bolstered by at least 45,000 reservists and citizens.
General Sir Richard Sherriff, ex-deputy supreme allied commander of NATO, told Sky News the UK defence budget is not big enough to expand the armed forces alone.
He added it’s time to “think the unthinkable” and consider introducing conscription to ready the country for a potential land war.
“I think we need to go further and look carefully at conscription,” he said.
But Downing Street moved to rule out any plans for conscription, saying that Army service will remain voluntary.
Carlos Del Toro, the US navy secretary, has urged the UK to “reassess” the size of its armed forces given “the threats that exist today”.
Downing Street defended the government’s spending on defence, saying Britain has been Washington’s “partner of choice” in its strikes against Houthi rebels in the Red Sea because of its “military strength”.