Prince Harry has met with a veteran who survived being set on fire.

Prince Harry

Prince Harry

The 32-year-old royal met with Private Karl Hinett at a Veterans' Mental Heath conference on Thursday (16.03.17), as he made an impassioned speech which urged veterans to open up about their mental health, so as to be able to seek appropriate help.

Former serviceman Karl was just 19 years old when he almost lost his life during active service in 2005, after he was torched by a mob in a dramatic attack in Iraq.

The then teenager, from Dudley in the West Midlands, was inside a warrior tank which was attacked by rioters during a raid on a jail in Basra to free two undercover soldiers.

Whilst the four other soldiers in the tank escaped without serious injury, Karl was left with 37 per cent burns, and had to undergo five years of gruelling skin grafts and operations.

Meanwhile, Prince Harry attended the conference on behalf of mental heath campaign Heads Together, which he spearheads alongside his brother Prince William, and sister-in-law Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge.

He said whilst at the conference: "It is incredibly difficult to talk about mental health in the armed forces. It is still a very difficult conversation.

"As a military person, once you put that uniform on during your training, you are taught to be invincible and not to let anybody down.

"However, a lot of individuals prefer turning to alcohol rather than a friend."

And it isn't the first time Harry - who previously served two tours of duty in Afghanistan - has talked about mental health in connection with the military as he previously drew on his own experiences to urge people not to face their mental health battles alone.

He said: "Stigma cannot and must not be the reason we shy away from equipping ourselves and our families for the day that a dark cloud may appear.

"I have seen the threat that this fear and stigma poses in my work with veterans and my former Army friends.

"Guys and girls in the armed services often need to think they are invincible.

"I know first-hand from my time as an Apache pilot that you do not want anyone to question your ability to cope with pressure and stress."

"When you are called on to assist with a rescue mission in a dangerous situation, you want everyone to know you won't be fazed by the challenge.

"Questioning can bring about doubt, when you know the training will kick in. We all consider ourselves at the top of our game and strive for perfection."


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