Page last updated at 10:53 GMT, Friday, 25 July 2008 11:53 UK

British soldier killed in Helmand

Army dog handler and dog
Dogs are used by the Army to sniff out explosives.

A British Army dog handler has been killed in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed.

The soldier, from the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, died on Thursday after coming under fire while on routine patrol, the MoD said.

Six other soldiers were injured in the incident in Helmand Province.

The death brings the total number of British service personnel who have died in Afghanistan to 112. The soldier's next of kin have been informed.

The soldier was attached to the 2nd Battalion, the Parachute Regiment, serving in the Sangin area of Helmand.

His patrol came under small arms fire from insurgents, injuring five other soldiers from 2nd Battalion and one from 3rd Battalion, the Parachute Regiment.

An explosives sniffer dog was also killed in the incident.

An MoD spokesman said one of the injured soldiers was being returned to the UK for further treatment. His injuries were not life-threatening.

The other five soldiers had been treated and would be returning to duties, he added.

Royal Navy Captain Michael Finney, spokesman for the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, said: "I would like to offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends of our fallen soldier."

Army weapons maintenance specialist Corporal Jason Barnes, 25, from Exeter, Devon, was killed by a roadside bomb in Helmand on Tuesday.

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