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Prince Harry confirms armed forces departure with goodbye letter

Britain's Prince Harry has confirmed reports he is leaving the military with a letter describing his "tough decision" to leave the army after 10 years.

Speculation surfaced last month (Feb15) that the royal, 30, was gearing up to retire from the military in order to focus more on his charity efforts, and on Monday (16Mar15), he released a statement that the rumors are true.


The letter reads: "After a decade of service, moving on from the army has been a really tough decision. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have had the chance to do some very challenging jobs and have met many fantastic people in the process.


"From learning the hard way to stay onside with my Color Sergeant at (military academy) Sandhurst, to the incredible people I served with during two tours in Afghanistan - the experiences I have had over the last 10 years will stay with me for the rest of my life. For that I will always be hugely grateful."


He continues, "Inevitably most good things come to an end and I am at a crossroads in my military career. Luckily for me, I will continue to wear the uniform and mix with fellow servicemen and women for the rest of my life, helping where I can, and making sure the next few Invictus Games are as amazing as the last.


"I am considering the options for the future and I am really excited about the possibilities... While I am finishing one part of my life, I am getting straight into a new chapter. I am really looking forward to it."


Prince Harry will spend next month (Apr15) with the Australian Defense Force, and stay Down Under for an official Royal tour of New Zealand in May (15). His time with the military will officially end in June (15).


A statement from Kensington Palace reveals Prince Harry will spend the rest of the summer volunteering with field-based conservation experts in Africa, then end the year (15) back home in London to assist with the Ministry of Defence's Recovery Capability Program, which helps those receiving physical and mental care.


Prince Harry, who is fourth-in-line to the throne, has had an impressive 10-year army career including two tours of Afghanistan and a swift move up in the military ranks in 2013 after qualifying as an Apache Aircraft Commander.