"Our recruitment from the black, Asian and minority ethnic communities has been improving over the years, but it is nowhere near where it needs to be," The Guardian cited Gen. Sir Nicholas Carter as saying.
The leaders of British forces and the Defense Ministry feel that conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have created a negative image of the military in Muslim communities, Carter added. He expressed hope this will change with the broader recruitment of soldiers from ethnic minorities.
Asian, black, Hindu and other ethnic minorities make up only 10 percent of the army, about 9,110 members, according to UK Defense Ministry estimates. Many of them have joined the forces from the Commonwealth of Nations countries rather than from the United Kingdom.
Muslims make up less than a percent, or 480 soldiers, out of the total of the 88,500 personnel in the British forces.