Harry 'cleared for Afghan posting'
Prince Harry has reportedly been cleared to be redeployed to Afghanistan.
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) would not comment on the reports but the 26-year-old Apache helicopter pilot is thought to be keen to return to the country after his first tour of duty was cut short in 2008.
An MoD spokesman said: "We cannot comment on the deployment of individual service personnel."
Clarence House also remained tight-lipped after reports appeared in The Sun and The Daily Mirror, with a spokesman saying only that it was up to the Army to send the Prince wherever it wants.
"Harry is an Army pilot and will deploy wherever the Army chooses to send him," the spokesman said. "His course finishes in 2012 and after that his deployment will be a matter for the Army chain of command."
The Prince, a British Army captain, served for 10 weeks in Afghanistan as a forward air controller in 2007-08, directing jets dropping bombs on Taliban positions in Helmand province. His tour of duty was abruptly ended however when foreign websites broke a media blackout on reporting details of his service. Then 23, he was withdrawn from the country after the news broke amid fears that his continuing presence would have increased the chances of attacks on the troops around him.
The young royal, known on base as Captain Wales, is currently undergoing "conversion to role" training at RAF Wattisham in Suffolk after qualifying as an Apache pilot. Upon completion of this course in seven months' time he will be assigned to a squadron. He is expected to be based at the flying station for four years.
The Sun said that both defence chiefs and the Queen have given the go-ahead for Harry to return to the frontline.
It said a final decision - which will be kept secret - will be made early next year.
It quoted a royal source as saying said: "Assuming Harry is successful the preliminary decision for him to return to frontline duties is now a go."