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Last Updated: Sunday, 16 April 2006, 08:13 GMT 09:13 UK
UK soldier dies after Iraq attack
British soldiers in Iraq
British troop numbers in Iraq are to be reduced
A British soldier has died from injuries after an improvised device exploded near Basra in southern Iraq, the Ministry of Defence has said.

The soldier, the 104th UK military fatality of the conflict, was a member of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.

Three of his colleagues were slightly injured by the roadside bomb.

The dead man's immediate next of kin have been informed and have requested his name be withheld until the wider family has been consulted.

"I was deeply saddened to hear of this incident; my thoughts and sympathies are with the families of all those concerned at this difficult time," said Armed Forces Minister Adam Ingram.

Troop reduction

The device exploded near a patrol north west of Basra on Saturday.

It comes after a suicide bomb attack on Friday close to the British logistics base at Shaibah, near Basra, in which four soldiers were treated for minor injuries.

The last British soldiers to die in Iraq were Captain Richard Holmes and Private Lee Ellis, both from 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment and attached to the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.

They were part of a routine patrol that was targeted by a roadside bomb on the outskirts of Amara, southern Iraq, on 28 February.

Defence Secretary John Reid announced last month that the number of UK troops in Iraq will be reduced by 800 to 7,000.


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