Afghanistan fighting kills four UK soldiers

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The Independent Online

An attack in southern Afghanistan killed three British soldiers today, and another died of wounds suffered in an earlier operation, the Ministry of Defence said.

The deadliest attack occurred when an explosion hit an escort operation in Afghanistan's Helmand province, killing the three soldiers from 1st Battalion The Rifles, the ministry said.

Back home, a royal marine died at a hospital Birmingham on Wednesday of wounds sustained two days earlier while on patrol near the town of Sangin, also in Helmand province.

The ministry did not identify the soldiers but said their next of kin had been informed.

Britain has about 8,000 soldiers in Afghanistan. Most are battling the Taliban in the south of the country.

The four deaths brought to 149 the number of British personnel who have been killed in Afghanistan since 2001.