A 19-year-old soldier has left his base and travelled to the Middle East to fight Islamic State.
The serviceman, who is on leave, said he was joining the Kurdish Peshmerga in their battle against the extremists in Iraq and Syria because he wanted to help them.
The man, who is not being named, told his parents a couple of days ago and has told friends he intends to spend a year in the region.
He has been in the UK Army since leaving school at 16 and is known to have been been learning Arabic.
One text message to his family said: “I’ve gone to join the Kurds in Syria and Iraq. I’m with other British people and a Canadian at the moment.
“I don’t know how to explain it to you but I really want and need to do this and I will be safe.”
Another message said: “I have good skills and I can speak the language I can help these people and help with this fight.”
And a third said: “I’m so sorry to put you through this but I do good, I will get in trouble for being AWOL but it’s minor and no prison sentence.”
His worried family have contacted Sky News. Correspondent Ashish Joshi said the UK soldier is “driven by his conviction that the Kurds need the help of the British, they need help with trained soldiers who can travel to the region”.
“He speaks the language, he is travelling out there and he thinks he can make a difference to the cause.”
Joshi added: “His mother is beside herself with worry. She wants him to be safe.”
The soldier has said he intends to spend a year travelling between Iraq and Syria with Kurdish forces and if he spends that amount of time out there he will be officially absent without leave.
An Army spokesman said: “We are aware of reports and investigating.”
However, an Army source said that if the soldier outstayed his period of leave he would face arrest for going AWOL.
Read more: SkyNews