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Last Updated: Monday, 30 April 2007, 14:26 GMT 15:26 UK
UK soldier killed in Basra named
Rifleman Paul Donnachie (Pic: MoD)
Rifleman Paul Donnachie was killed while on patrol in Basra
A British soldier killed while on a routine patrol in Basra, southern Iraq, has been named by the Ministry of Defence as Rifleman Paul Donnachie.

The 18-year-old from Reading was shot dead after dismounting from his vehicle in the Al Ashar district.

The soldier was from the 2nd Battalion The Rifles. He was killed on Sunday.

He is the 12th British soldier to die in Iraq this month - the highest monthly casualty figure since the invasion four years ago.

Major Alex Baring, his company commander, said: "Rifleman Donnachie, or 'Donny' as he was known to his mates, was the epitome of what it is to be professional.

"Out here in Basra City, he was one of those rare sorts that never complained whatever he was told to do, in fact he used to volunteer to go out on patrols.

We are committed to enhancing the security of the region, supporting the Iraqi Security Forces
Major David Gell

"He never wanted to be away from where the action was. For an 18-year-old that's pretty impressive."

Major David Gell, a British army spokesman in Basra, said the patrol had been travelling in a Bulldog Army vehicle, but had to dismount to carry out checks as they moved through the town.

He said: "It was an opportunist small arms fire attack. They are not uncommon in Basra or indeed across the province as a whole so we are not looking at it as a new threat.

"We are committed to enhancing the security of the region, supporting the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF).

"An incident like this, tragic as it is, will make us pull together and recognise that we have a job to do out here."

The latest death brings the total number of UK troops killed in operations in Iraq to 146, which includes 112 killed as a result of hostile action.

A British Army spokesman on the incident

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