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Last Updated: Monday, 7 August 2006, 19:10 GMT 20:10 UK
Tributes are paid to dead soldier
Andrew Cutts
Private Andrew Cutts had joined the army with his twin brother
Tributes have been paid to a 19-year-old Nottinghamshire soldier killed fighting in Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defence said Private Andrew Cutts died after coming under significant fire in Operation Snakebite in the Northern Helmand province.

The soldier, of Oak Avenue, Blidworth, was due home on leave - but opted to stay in Afghanistan, said a friend.

Private Cutts and his twin brother James joined the Army after leaving the Joseph Whittaker school in Rainworth.

His schoolfriend Nathan Welch said: "You couldn't ask for a better boy really. I knew him since I was five years old. He was always smiling, I can say that. He never did anyone any harm.

"I just feel for his mum and dad really and his brother James - I can't imagine what he's going through."

Defence Secretary Des Browne offered his condolences to the dead soldier's family and friends.

He added that the tragedy underlined the challenges the British army faces in bringing security to the people of Afghanistan.

Tough start for British forces
07 Aug 06 |  South Asia
UK soldier killed in Afghanistan
07 Aug 06 |  South Asia

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