Army Faces New Shame; Drunken Soldiers Heap More Disgrace on Britain in Cyprus

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRIS DRAKE

THE British Army faced further humilation in Cyprus yesterday after a court heard how three drunken soldiers wrecked hotel furnishings and romped naked in a swimming pool at an out-of-bounds resort.

The men from the Royal Signals Regiment were each fined [pounds sterling]230 for indecent exposure and causing malicious damage at the hotel in Ayia Napa on Sunday .

They were on the Mediterranean island on a three-week adventure training course. The Army said they would be immediately sent back to their base at Blandford, Somerset, and would face disciplinary action for breaking the ban on entering the resort.

It is the latest embarrassment for the service, whose reputation on the Mediterranean island has suffered from a string of unsavoury episodes this year. Ayia Napa was put out of bounds to soldiers visiting on courses because of the number of drunken brawls and other violence involving British troops.

In May, three members of the elite Royal Marines Regiment also on an adventure training course were fined after dancing naked in the street while singing God Save the Queen. Their commander promptly cancelled all training courses in Cyprus for his men. Last night British bases spokesman Captain Sean Tully refused to name those involved in the latest incident but confirmed that they had caused almost [pounds sterling]100 worth of damage. …