The army is investigating after the far-right activist Tommy Robinson posted a photograph of himself surrounded by what appeared to be soldiers or cadets.
The former English Defence League (EDL) leader, 35, shared a picture of himself posing with a group of grinning young men in camouflage uniform.
He also posted a video of himself on Monday with a crowd who started cheering and shouting his name. He wrote on Facebook: “A moment like this makes it all worth while. Today I met real British heroes.”
The army said it was aware of the photograph and footage, and was “investigating the circumstances surrounding this”. A spokeswoman said: “Far-right ideology is completely at odds with the values and ethos of the armed forces. The armed forces have robust measures in place to ensure those exhibiting extremist views are neither tolerated nor permitted to serve.”
Imam Asim Hafiz, an Islamic religious adviser to the armed forces, said: “Any form of racism, discrimination or extremism is taken extremely seriously and will be dealt with accordingly. The armed forces remain absolutely committed to welcoming individuals from across all faiths and cultures into its ranks.”
The Muslim Council of Britain said Robinson “does not represent our armed forces, however much he tries to claim otherwise”.
“He will rile against the very real steps taken to make the military more diverse,” a spokesman added. “He will remain silent on the sacrifices Muslims and others made in the two world wars. We welcome the swift statement by the army in disassociating itself from the far-right and we hope that safeguards are put in place to ensure that Islamophobia will have no place in our armed forces.”