LONDON (AP) -- Britain's military says a soldier was mistakenly sent to fight on the front line in Afghanistan while he was still just 17 years old.
The Ministry of Defense said Thursday that the incident was regrettable and violated military policy. Sixteen and 17-year-olds can join the British army but are not allowed to participate in combat.
The military blamed human error for what it said was an "extremely rare situation."
The Sun newspaper identified the recruit as Adam Wilkie and said he had served in a reserve battalion based in Cyprus.
The tabloid showed photographs of a mature-looking Wilkie in camouflage trousers and said he had taken part in several firefights in Afghanistan's Helmand Province in 2010.
The defense ministry says the soldier is still with the military.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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