Belfast Telegraph

Two soldiers in Corbyn target practice furore 'come from Northern Ireland'

Stills from the video showing members of the Guards Parachute Platoon shooting at a picture of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
Stills from the video showing members of the Guards Parachute Platoon shooting at a picture of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
Stills from the video showing members of the Guards Parachute Platoon shooting at a picture of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
Video: Sir Mark Carleton-Smith

By Lisa Smyth

Two soldiers facing the sack after they were caught on camera shooting at a photograph of Jeremy Corbyn are from here, according to reports.

In total four soldiers from the elite Guards Parachute Platoon have been flown home in disgrace from Afghanistan and face the wrath of top brass for bringing the reputation of the Army into disrepute.

The Daily Mail claimed two of the men are from Northern Ireland. However, due to fears over their safety no further details have been released.

The footage, filmed at an indoor firing range in Kabul, was shared on Snapchat and then went viral when it was leaked on Twitter.

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Stills from the video showing members of the Guards Parachute Platoon shooting at a picture of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

The soldiers were using paint "simunition" rounds and not bullets, although there were multiple holes in the picture of Mr Corbyn's head.

The video was captioned with "happy with that".

Mr Corbyn reacted with shock to the video, while the Army's most senior officer admitted that the troops' behaviour had "damaged our reputation".

MPs also expressed concern over the footage. Labour's Stella Creasy said the "awful video damages the well-deserved professional standing" of the Army.

She tweeted: "Appalling. Completely unacceptable and frightening to threaten violence to any politician."

Labour colleague Dan Jarvis, a former paratrooper, described the incident as "shameful and utterly unacceptable".

In an unprecedented message on YouTube, General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith, Chief of the General Staff, said: "This hasn't been a good week for the Army. It has damaged our reputation, which is exceptionally hard-earned and includes the sacrifice o

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Video: Sir Mark Carleton-Smith
f our friends on the battlefield.

 

"We are proud custodians of that reputation, which needs all of us - each and every one of us - to do better.

"Let's make sure that together we get this right."

The reaction has prompted speculation that the men involved will be kicked out of the Army for the embarrassment they have caused.

According to the Daily Mail, each of the soldiers, whose ranks range from private to corporal, has a clean record.

However, commanders believe that their actions have brought the Army into disrepute.

Sanctions for doing so include discharge from the ranks or demotion. The Guards Parachute Platoon, part of the 3rd Battalion, the Parachute Regiment, can trace its history back to the Second World War.

The soldiers, who are drawn from units such as the Coldstream Guards, are handpicked to undergo exhaustive airborne training before being seconded to 3 Para.

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