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Prince Harry coming to U.S. in October for army training

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Prince Harry will join British military exercises in Arizona and California in October
  • As "Captain Wales," he is training to fly Apache helicopter gunships
  • He saw combat in Afghanistan in late 2007 and early 2008

(CNN) -- Britain's Prince Harry will be coming to America in October to train on Apache helicopter gunships in his role as a serving army officer, U.S. and British military officials reported Wednesday.

News of Harry's U.S.-based training was reported last week, and specifics of his activities were announced Wednesday.

The prince -- Capt. Harry Wales, to his comrades -- will be training at the Gila Bend Air Force Auxiliary Field in southern Arizona and at the Navy's airfield in El Centro, California, starting the first week of October. It's part of a two-month series of maneuvers dubbed "Exercise Crimson Eagle," in which British fliers will practice with the Apaches in terrain similar to southern Afghanistan, where British troops are currently based.

"We look to all media outlets to treat Captain Wales as a serviceman and allow him to conduct his training," Britain's Defense Ministry said in a statement issued Wednesday.

Harry is the younger son of Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, and the late Princess Diana. He served on the front line in Afghanistan as a forward air controller and saw combat, but was withdrawn in February 2008 after news of his deployment broke.

His brother, Prince William, is also an army officer. But as second in line for the throne, he is specifically barred from combat.

CNN's Shawn Nottingham contributed to this report.