Iraq bomb victims named

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The Independent Online

Two Royal Marines and two soldiers killed in a makeshift bomb attack on a patrol boat in southern Iraq were named by the Ministry of Defence today.











Among the victims of the Remembrance Sunday blast was Staff Sergeant Sharron Elliott, 34, from Ipswich, of the Army's Intelligence Corps.



Staff Sgt Elliott, who later moved to the North East, became only the second woman to die in action in Iraq since the conflict began in 2003.



Also killed were Warrant Officer Class 2 Lee Hopkins, 35, of the Royal Signals, and two Royal Marines, Corporal Ben Nowak and Marine Jason Hylton.



Cpl Nowak, 27, lived in Liverpool and served with 45 Commando, but was attached to 539 Assault Squadron.



Marine Hylton, 33, lived with his parents in Swadlincote, Derbyshire, and was from 539 Assault Squadron.



The four died when a bomb, believed to be a home-made device attached to a jetty, exploded near their boat on the Shatt al-Arab waterway in Basra city.



Three other service personnel were seriously injured in the attack, which brought the British death toll in Iraq since 2003 to 125.



Before Staff Sgt Elliott, the only other woman to die in action since the present campaign began was Flight Lt Sarah-Jayne Mulvihill, 32, whose helicopter was shot down over Basra in May.



The release of the names came on the same day that Tony Blair was giving evidence to a US commission ordered to re-think White House policy on Iraq.



Mr Blair was expected to discuss the prospect of opening a new partnership with Iran and Syria, once described by the US as members of an "axis of evil".



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