News

    Afghanistan Blast Kills Six British Soldiers

    Afghan National Army soldiers arrive near the site of a blast in Helmand province, March 7, 2012
    Afghan National Army soldiers arrive near the site of a blast in Helmand province, March 7, 2012

    Six British soldiers were killed when a massive explosion hit their armored vehicle in southern Afghanistan.

    The soldiers were on patrol near the capital of Helmand province, Lashkar Gah, Tuesday evening when the blast happened. It was the single deadliest incident for British troops in Afghanistan since a helicopter crash in 2006 killed 14.

    NATO said the troops were believed killed following an improvised explosive device attack. Afghan officials said the vehicle hit a landmine.

    The deaths bring the number of British troops killed in Afghanistan since 2001 to 404. Britain has had the second highest number of casualties in the 10-year war after the United States.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron mourned the loss Wednesday, but said the mission in Afghanistan remained important for British national security.

    "This is a desperately sad day for our country, and desperately sad of course for the families concerned. It is a reminder of the huge price that we're paying for the work we're doing in Afghanistan, the sacrifice that our troops have made and continued to make," said Cameron. "I do believe that it's important work for our national security right here at home, but of course this work will increasingly be carried out by Afghan soldiers and we all want to see that transition take place.''

    Defense Secretary Philip Hammond also condemned the attack, but said it would "ultimately fail to derail" the mission.  

    Britain's Ambassador to Afghanistan William Patey praised the role of British troops in helping build up Afghan security forces and strengthen governance and development in the country. He said the six British soldiers believed killed Tuesday were working closely with a British-led provincial reconstruction team in Helmand.

    Britain has around 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, most of them in Helmand province, and plans to withdraw several hundred by the end of this year. All international combat troops are set to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

    Elsewhere in Afghanistan Wednesday, officials say four civilians were killed when a bomb planted on a motorcycle exploded in the southern province of Kandahar.  

    At least nine other civilians were wounded in the attack, which took place in the border town of Spin Boldak.

    Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Haron
    March 08, 2012 1:14 AM
    so any blast which happen to british troops it is the planet of thier past government till now & it would be continue. but we believe that UK is responsible for the past situations & present situations. they dismissile all Afghan troops from M-16 & distributed them to Taliban. cause Afghan army always shoot the british troops in Afg. Afghan army hate from British troops. i condumn the blast but not i'm not sad. anything they planet they would grow it.

    by: Haron
    March 08, 2012 1:04 AM
    i condumn this blast but something must be mention. it's not the first time that Britain has came in Afg but it's the 4th times. however humans call britain people as arch cause they're very smart people but we call britain people as seditious cause all the M-16 rockets are made by Britains & taliban have M-16 the models are 2010-2011 not 1880 nor 1990 but 2010-2011 in the south & east.

    by: Islam lover
    March 07, 2012 5:18 PM
    Ten year intervention of the USA and its allies has turned Afganistan into a dead land with hatred, nonstop killings, destruction. We cannot see peace, democracy or freedom there as they have promised before. What Syria would become if the West was allowed to intervine.

    by: hamad part 2 of 2
    March 07, 2012 5:04 AM
    British teachers and their pension . Cameron should explain in front Britons what is the benefits from this 10 years wars which cost UK budget heavy losses . Killing two US advisers indicates that the security has become so fragile otherwise the cooperation between two side has taken another direction.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensionsi
    X
    April 29, 2016 12:28 AM
    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensions

    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Bangladesh Targeted Killings Spark Wave of Fear

    People in Bangladesh’s capital are expressing deep concern over the brutal attacks that have killed secular blogger, and most recently a gay rights activist and an employee of the U.S. embassy. Xulhaz Mannan, an embassy protocol officer and the editor of the country’s only gay and transgender magazine Roopban; and his friend Mehboob Rabbi Tanoy, a gay rights activist, were hacked to death by five attackers in Mannan’s Dhaka home earlier this month.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.
    Video

    Video West Urges Unity in Libya as Migrant Numbers Soar

    The Italian government says a NATO-led mission aimed at stemming the flow of migrants from Libya to Europe could be up and running by July. There are concerns that the number of migrants could soar as the route through Greece and the Balkans remains blocked. Western powers say the political chaos in Libya is being exploited by people smugglers — and they are pressuring rival groups to come together under the new unity government. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Russia’s TV Rain Swims Against Tide in Sea of Kremlin Propaganda

    Russia’s media freedoms have been gradually eroded under President Vladimir Putin as his government has increased state ownership, influence, and restrictions on critical reporting. Television, where most Russians get their news, has been the main target and is now almost completely state controlled. But in the Russian capital, TV Rain stands out as an island in a sea of Kremlin propaganda.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora