Britain's Prince Harry says he killed Taliban fighters during his stint as a helicopter gunner in Afghanistan.
The prince, third in line to the throne, spoke about his role as an Apache co-pilot gunner after completing his five-month tour of duty.
He flew scores of missions in an Apache attack chopper over the restive southern Helmand Province during the 20-week posting.
The 28-year-old said Islamist insurgents were put "out of the game" and described life in Britain's sprawling Camp Bastion base, where he slept in a tent and a shipping container.
Asked by Britain's Press Association if he had killed from the cockpit, Prince Harry said: "Yeah, so lots of people have.
"The squadron's been out here. Everyone's fired a certain amount.
"Take a life to save a life. That's what we revolve around, I suppose.
"If there's people trying to do bad stuff to our guys, then we'll take them out of the game.
"As soon as we're outside the fence, we're in the thick of it.
"We fire when we have to... but essentially we're more of a deterrent than anything else."
If there's people trying to do bad stuff to our guys, then we'll take them out of the game.
Prince Harry spoke to reporters on three occasions during his time in Afghanistan under an agreement which only allowed the interviews to be released once he left the war zone.
The prince supported allied troops fighting the Taliban at close quarters and accompanied British and US helicopters on missions to evacuate casualties.
As co-pilot in the Apache, the prince was in charge of the weapons systems in the two-man cockpit, firing Hellfire air-to-surface missiles, rockets and a 30-millimetre gun.
"It's a joy for me because I'm one of those people who loves playing PlayStation and Xbox, so with my thumbs I like to think I'm probably quite useful," he said.
When on a shift requiring a high level of readiness, the prince and the other three members of his squadron sprinted to their helicopters in less than 45 seconds and were airborne within five minutes of an alert.
They did not know their missions until they were inside their aircraft.
Prince Harry in Afghanistan
Prince Harry runs from the VHR (very high readiness) tent to scramble his Apache helicopter with fellow Pilots at the British controlled flight-line at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan's Helmand Province. Photo taken on November 3, 2012, and released on January 21, 2013, after Prince Harry completed his tour of duty. (AFP: John Stillwell/Pool)
Prince Harry wears his monocle gun sight as he sits in the front seat of his Apache Helicopter cockpit at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan's Helmand Province. The photo was taken on November 2, 2012, and released on January 21, 2013, after Prince Harry completed his tour of duty. (AFP: John Stillwell/Pool)
Prince Harry wears a Santa Claus hat as he shows media his sleeping area and bed at the VHR (very high readiness) tent at Camp Bastion, southern Afghanistan in this photograph taken December 12, 2012, and released January 21, 2013. (Reuters: John Stillwell/Pool)
Prince Harry plays computer games in the VHR (very high readiness) tent at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan's Helmand Province. Photo taken on November 3, 2012, and released on January 21, 2013, after Prince Harry completed his tour of duty. (AFP: John Stillwell/Pool)
Prince Harry stands in front of an Apache Helicopter in the French Alps during his mountain flying training in March 2011. (AFP/Clarence House)
Britain's Prince Harry carries a pistol and wears body armour in the desert in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan, February 18, 2008. Prince Harry is being withdrawn from Afghanistan immediately, the Defence Ministry said on February 29, 2008, after news leaked on the internet that he had been secretly fighting on the front lines for 10 weeks. (John Stillwell: Reuters)
Prince Harry sits on his camp bed at FOB (forward operating base) Delhi, in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan, January 2, 2008. The government is reviewing Prince Harry's presence in Afghanistan, where he has been deployed with the army for two-and-a-half months, following leaks in the international media that he was deployed there, the British Ministry of Defence said on February 28, 2008. (Reuters/Pool)
Britain's Prince Harry mans a 50 calibre machine gun on the observation post at JTAC Hill, close to FOB Delhi in Helmand province in Southern Afghanistan, on January 2, 2008. (John Stillwell: AFP)
Britain's Prince Harry patrols through the deserted town of Garmisir close to FOB Delhi (forward operating base), in Helmand province in Southern Afghanistan on January 02, 2008. (John Stillwell/Pool: AFP)
'Good old gawp'
Prince Harry served in the 130-strong 662 Squadron, 3 Regiment Army Air Corps.
He insisted that his life in Camp Bastion was "as normal as it's going to get", although the prince admitted he was frustrated by staring from fellow troops he had not previously met.
"I go into the cookhouse and everyone has a good old gawp, and that's one thing that I dislike about being here," he said.
The prince admitted he would rather be out on the ground again in a small patrol base with the Household Cavalry regiment.
Yes, you get shot at. But if the guys who are doing the same job as us are being shot at on the ground, I don't think there's anything wrong with us being shot at as well.
In his previous stint in Afghanistan, before he trained as a pilot, he served 10 weeks in 2007-2008 coordinating air attacks on the Taliban, although the deployment had to be hastily cut short when a news blackout on his deployment was broken.
Of the major royal event in his absence - the announcement that his brother Prince William and wife Catherine are expecting a baby in July - Prince Harry said he "can't wait to be an uncle".
William, who flies a Royal Air Force search and rescue helicopter in Wales, has been blocked from going to Afghanistan because it is considered too dangerous to send the second in line to the throne.
Prince Harry said: "He'd love to be out here. And, to be honest with you, I don't see why he couldn't.... no-one knows who's in the cockpit.
"Yes, you get shot at. But if the guys who are doing the same job as us are being shot at on the ground, I don't think there's anything wrong with us being shot at as well."
Prince Harry admitted he let the royal family down in August 2012 shortly before his deployment, when pictures emerged of him frolicking naked in Las Vegas during a game of strip billiards.
"I probably let myself down, I let my family down, I let other people down," the prince said.
"But at the end of the day I was in a private area and there should be a certain amount of privacy that one should expect.
"It was probably a classic example of me probably being too much army and not enough prince."