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Military

British troops killed in Afghanistan reaches 100

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

London, June 9, IRNA
UK-Afghanistan
Prime Minister Gordon Brown Monday paid tribute to British troops in Afghanistan as the number killed reached 100.

Defence Secretary Des Browne also insisted that the war in Afghanistan was "the noble cause of the 21st century" after three soldiers were killed in a suicide attack in the southern Helmat province on Sunday.

The latest death brings the total number of British troops killed in Afghanistan to 100 since 2001, but the overwhelming majority of fatalities have been suffered since the UK first deployed soldiers in Helmat just over two years ago.

It was revealed last week that 114 British soldier have also suffered serious or very serious injuries in Afghanistan up until February 15 this year.

There have also been 212 UK troops killed in Iraq with a similar number of those badly injured.

The British prime minister said those who had died had "paid the ultimate price" but had "achieved something of lasting value." They were helping to turn a "lawless region sheltering terrorists into an emerging democracy," he said.

The defence secretary said that no loss could be compensated for, but he remained convinced the campaign was "the noble cause of the 21st century."

"We are making significant progress in Afghanistan. It's slow, sometimes it's frustratingly slow," Browne he told BBC Radio Four's Today programme.

The latest fatalities occurred as a foot patrol was returning to base through some villages when it was attacked by a single suicide bomber.

One other soldier was injured, but was expected to make a good recovery, according to the Ministry of Defence.

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