20/09/2012 02:38 BST | Updated 20/09/2012 08:46 BST

Camp Bastion Birth: Female Soldier Delivers Baby Boy On Helmand Base Days After Taliban Attack Which Targeted Prince Harry (PICTURES)

A British servicewoman has given birth to a baby boy while serving in Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defence said the soldier - who is understood to have been unaware of her pregnancy - had a son at Camp Bastion on Tuesday.

Both mother and baby are in a stable condition and are due to be flown home in the coming days after a specialist medical team from the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford arrives in the Helmand Province base.

The birth came just four days after two US Marines were killed and six planes destroyed during an attack on the desert base in Helmand province, where the bulk of the UK's 9,500-strong force in Afghanistan are deployed.

Taliban sources claimed Bastion was targeted because Prince Harry is serving there as an Apache attack helicopter gunner.


An MoD spokesman said: "We can confirm that on September 18 a UK servicewoman serving in Afghanistan gave birth in the Camp Bastion Field Hospital to a baby boy.

"Mother and baby are both in a stable condition in the hospital and are receiving the best possible care.

"A specialist Paediatric Retrieval Team is being prepared and will deploy in the next few days in order to provide appropriate care for mother and baby on the flight home."

Scroll down for more pictures of Prince Harry at Camp Bastion

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The solider is understood to have been unaware of her pregnancy and was five months into her tour of duty when she gave birth

The spokesman added: "It is not military policy to allow service women to deploy on operations if they are pregnant. In this instance the MoD was unaware of her pregnancy.

"As with all medical cases, when the need arises, individuals are returned to the UK for appropriate treatment/care."

According to the Daily Mail, the woman served as a gunner with the Royal Artillery, and had been deployed with the 17th Mechanised Brigade since March.

The newspaper said she only discovered she was pregnant after she went to medics complaining of stomach pains, and the baby was born five weeks premature.

The Sun says the soldier passed all fitness tests and training, including an eight-mile march with a 25lb backpack, despite having been four months pregnant when she was deployed.

A source told the paper: “It’s a hell of a story for mum and son. They are both doing really well. After the terrible events of Saturday, this little lad’s been an unexpected morale boost.”