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U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Saturday urged Congress not to delay passage of a full-year Pentagon spending bill, also known as an "omnibus," saying it was key to America's security, Reuters reported.

"So let me urge Congress to pass an on-time appropriation so that we can get the capabilities to further strengthen our deterrence," Austin said at the Reagan National Defense Forum in Simi Valley, California, which was attended by both Republican and Democratic lawmakers.

The normally proposed alternative to the "omnibus," known as a continuing resolution, or CR, would effectively freeze spending at current levels. Such a bill would force the military to rely on obsolete equipment, while the development of new military technology would be largely halted, U.S. lawmakers warned.

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