UK soldier killed in Afghanistan

British soldiers in Afghanistan
Image caption The soldier was part of a group dispatched to talk to local people

A British soldier from 1st Battalion the Rifles was killed in an explosion in Afghanistan on Monday, the Ministry of Defence has announced.

The soldier was killed by a bomb while on a patrol in the Sayedabad Kalay area of the Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand province.

An MoD spokesman said the soldier's next of kin have been informed.

The death takes the number of British military deaths in operations in Afghanistan since 2001 to 366.

Spokesman for Task Force Helmand, Lt Col Tim Purbrick, said: "The soldier was part of a foot patrol which had been deployed to meet and talk to the local people.

"The patrol had left their base and was moving to rendezvous with another patrol when the soldier was fatally struck by an improvised explosive device.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends."