MOSCOW, October 11 (RIA Novosti) - The UK Ministry of Defense (MoD) announced that the Queen has ordered for the former military officer to be stripped off his medal for bravery in Afghanistan, following a five year investigation revealing that his accreditation was not awarded on accurate and reliable merit.
“The Queen has directed that the award of the Military Cross dated 6th March 2009 to Robert Michael Armstrong, formerly Major, Royal Regiment of Artillery... shall be canceled and annulled,” the Ministry’s official statement released on Friday on The Gazette stated.
“The MoD can confirm that an investigation has concluded into the circumstances surrounding the award of a gallantry medal relating to an incident in Afghanistan,” the Ministry of Defense said in a separate statement.
According to the Daily Mail, Major Armstrong helped write his own award, which is prohibited by the military protocol. Also, Armstrong was accused of taking credit for other serving soldiers whose convoy was ambushed by Taliban gunmen in 2008.
But Major Armstrong, via his lawyer, said he did not partake in affirming the citation, claiming that senior officials did not counter check the facts with any of the Afghan National Army personnel, the newspaper reported.
According to a guide on Honors and Awards in the armed forces, the subject of a citation should not know their name has been put forward and all information should be checked by speaking to all who were present during the act of bravery.
Meanwhile, taking away the medal has put in question the process via which it is awarded.
“It is good to hear that the army has come clean and withdrawn his award. Nothing annoys a soldier more than people getting awards that they are not entitled to,” former Major Charles Heyman told the Daily Mail.
This the first time the Queen has ever revoked a gallantry medal.