London: A British soldier was killed in a
bomb attack in southern Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence
said today, bringing the death toll of British troops, serving
there since 2001, to 211.
The soldier, who served with the Royal Electrical and
Mechanical Engineers, was caught in an ambush in Babaji
District, central Helmand Province, said a ministry statement.
Britain has suffered a spate of losses since early
July, when it launched a joint operation with Afghan troops
against Taliban forces in Helmand to try to regain control of
the southern province ahead of the August 20 Afghan election.
There are some 9,000 British soldiers serving in
In recent months, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has had
to fend off increasing criticism over the adequacy of
equipment the troops have to work with.
Brown paid a surprise visit to Afghanistan on
Saturday, and said another 200 soldiers specialised in dealing
with the improvised explosives devices (IEDs) that have
claimed so many lives would be arriving this autumn.
But the mounting death toll has also revived questions
about the purpose of the British mission.