Harry changes plans after Afghan deaths

2012-03-08 13:44

Kingston - Britain's Prince Harry proved he was a top shot on Wednesday during his trip to Jamaica, but he also changed his plans after learning that six fellow troops had been killed in Afghanistan.

The British prince fired 16 live rounds on a 30m practice range and earned praise from a local army trainer.

"Excellent shooting, a perfect grouping with perfect results," said Jamaican Defence Force Sergeant Anthony Forbes.

However the prince, who is an Apache helicopter pilot in the British Army, cancleled a planned rappelling event after it emerged that the six troops had been killed in Afghanistan when a massive roadside bomb engulfed their armored vehicle.

PHOTOS: Prince Harry races Usain Bolt in Jamaica

A statement from a Royal family spokesperson said Prince Harry "did not wish to take part in a military activity which would be deemed peripheral to an Apache pilot", following the deaths.

"The focus for the British Army should be on its core professional roles and of looking after the bereaved of those tragically killed in Afghanistan," on such a tragic day, the statement said.

Wednesday's deaths amounted to the biggest British loss of life in a single incident in Afghanistan since a Nimrod aircraft crashed in 2006, killing 14 crew.

The prince, third-in-line to the British throne, is touring Caribbean Commonwealth realms to mark Queen Elizabeth II's diamond jubilee year.