Soldier shot dead in Afghanistan

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The Independent Online

A British soldier has been killed in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence said.

The soldier, from the 2nd Battalion, The Royal Gurkha Rifles, was shot dead in the Nahr-e Saraj region of Helmand province yesterday.



Next of kin have been informed.



Tonight, Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Mackenzie, spokesman for Task Force Helmand, said: "It is with great sadness that I announce that a soldier from the 2nd Battalion, The Royal Gurkha Rifles was killed during operations with Afghan Police partners to extend security in the Nahr-e Saraj region of Helmand.



"Whilst protecting a checkpoint, his team came under insurgent small arms fire, during which he received a fatal gunshot wound.



"The thoughts and prayers of all those serving in Helmand are with his family at this very difficult time."



The death takes to 383 the number of British forces personnel or MoD civilians killed while serving in Afghanistan since the start of operations in October 2001.



The last British serviceman to be killed in Afghanistan was Royal Marine David Fairbrother, 24, of Blackburn, Lancashire, who was shot dead after his patrol was ambushed in southern Afghanistan.



Source: PA

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