Blast kills Marine in Afghanistan

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A marine from 40 Commando Royal Marines has been killed in an explosion in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence said. He was killed on Sunday evening in an explosion while on foot patrol near Sangin in northern Helmand. His family have been told.

Lt-Colonel James Carr-Smith, the spokesman for Task Force Helmand, said: "It is with sadness I must inform you that a Marine from 40 Commando Royal Marines was killed in an explosion near Sangin in northern Helmand.

"He was conducting a foot patrol in order to further develop the understanding of the local area when he was struck by an explosion. His bravery and selfless commitment will not be forgotten. He will be greatly missed and we will remember him."

The announcement comes after Corporal Stephen Curley, 26, from 40 Commando Royal Marines, died in an explosion while also on foot patrol in Helmand on Wednesday. He died on the same day as Gunner Zak Cusack, 20, from 4th Regiment Royal Artillery, who was killed in a firefight with the Taliban in Helmand Province.

The number of British troops who have now died in operations in Afghanistan since the mission began in 2001 stands at 289.