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Last Updated: Friday, 10 August 2007, 16:00 GMT 17:00 UK
UK soldiers killed in Iraq named
L/Sgt Chris Casey and L/Cpl Kirk Redpath
L/Sgt Chris Casey (left) and L/Cpl Kirk Redpath will be "sorely missed"
The Ministry of Defence has named two British soldiers who were killed in Iraq by a roadside bomb.

They were L/Sgt Chris Casey, 27, from London, and L/Cpl Kirk Redpath, 22, from Romford, Essex, both of 1st Battalion Irish Guards.

The pair died when a device detonated beside their patrol west of Basra, southern Iraq, on Thursday.

Their deaths bring to 168 the number of UK service personnel who have died in Iraq since the 2003 invasion.

Another two soldiers were seriously injured in the attack, which happened north of the Rumaylah oil fields.

'Thoughts and prayers'

L/Sgt Casey, who was married with two children, had joined the Army since 1998 and had served with the Irish Guards around the world including in Kosovo and Northern Ireland.

He had commanded a section of the Pipes Platoon whose role has been to instruct Iraqi Army soldiers, and he had previously drummed at the Edinburgh Tattoo.

His commanding officer, Lt Col Michael O'Dwyer MBE, said he " was a doting family man and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife and young children".

L/Corporal Redpath joined the Army in September 2003 and had been in Iraq since May.

The MoD said that although he was not required to leave his base as part of his job with his Battalion's Intelligence Cell, "he constantly volunteered to do so".

Capt James Bullock-Webster, L/Cpl Redpath's platoon commander, said he was "undoubtedly a fantastic person, a great role model and friend to all".

He is survived by his father and his mother, his grandparents and his younger brother Grant.

Des Browne, Secretary of State for Defence, paid tribute to both men.

He said: "They were a credit to their regiment - upholding the traditions of The Irish Guards and the British Army.

"Their efforts were highly valued by all who knew them and they will be sorely missed. I would like to express my condolences to their families and friends."

British forces have suffered 41 fatalities in Iraq so far in 2007, including four this week, compared with 29 in the whole of 2006.

British troop numbers in Basra have been reduced from 44,000 to 5,500, with plans to concentrate forces at their large airport base.

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