Two soldiers killed in Afghanistan

Two British soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan.The pair, from the 3rd Battalion, The Rifles, were killed by a suicide bomber in Helmand Province today, the Ministry of Defence has said.

Two British soldiers were killed by a suicide bomber today while on patrol with Afghan troops.

The members of the 3rd Battalion, The Rifles, were attacked while on a joint patrol designed to 'reassure local Afghans', near Sangin, Helmand Province, the Ministry of Defence said.

The bomber was not believed to be a member of the Afghan Army and next of kin have been informed.

An MoD spokesman said the soldiers were on foot at the time of the explosion, in which two Afghan National Army soldiers were also killed, this afternoon.

Today's deaths bring the total number of British service personnel who have died since the start of operations in Afghanistan in 2001 to 239.

There have been 102 deaths this year alone.

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Lieutenant Colonel David Wakefield, spokesman for Task Force Helmand, said: “It is with deep sadness I must inform you that two British soldiers were killed this afternoon near Sangin in northern Helmand Province.

“They were both from 3rd Battalion, The Rifles. They will be sorely missed by us, their comrades, but their sacrifice will not be forgotten.”

They were on a joint Afghan National Army and International Security Assistance Force patrol when they came under attack.

News of the deaths came after the first of 500 extra British troops to be deployed to Afghanistan arrived in the country.