A British soldier in southern Iraq has killed a young boy in what appears to have been an accidental shooting.
Life is still hard in Basra
The 14-year-old boy died after being hit at close range near an army barracks.
Ali Salim was playing near a school used to house soldiers of the Queen's Dragoon Guards in a suburb of Basra.
It is not yet clear how he came to be shot, but a doctor at Basra's teaching hospital who treated him told the BBC he had suffered a single bullet wound to the abdomen.
He said the weapon had been fired from very close range.
A friend of the 14-year-old, who said he had seen the shooting, said Ali was joking and talking with a soldier guarding the barracks when the soldier opened fire without provocation.
But other eyewitnesses said the boy appeared to have made a grab for the soldier's rifle and the weapon was discharged, probably accidentally.
Ali died a few hours later in hospital. A spokesman for the British Army said the Royal Military Police were investigating the incident.
The boy's death comes at a sensitive time for coalition forces.
US soldiers in Falluja killed 15 people after two demonstrations recently, saying protesters had opened fire on them.
They also killed a similar number in Mosul in similar circumstances.
The incidents have exacerbated anti-American sentiment in the areas and prompted demonstrations.