French soldier killed clearing bombs in Afghanistan

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A French military engineer was killed Tuesday by a homemade bomb that exploded while his mine-clearing unit tried to open up a route in Afghanistan's eastern highlands, the defence ministry said.

The corporal in the 13th Engineering Regiment was the 57th French soldier to die in Afghanistan since the start of the coalition campaign in 2001.

He died in the Tagab Valley, east of Kabul, while his squad was preparing a route ahead of a planned operation by another unit in the NATO-led force, which has been battling the Taliban and other insurgents.

© 2011 AFP

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