Two French soldiers killed in Afghanistan

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Two French soldiers were killed and a third was seriously injured in Afghanistan Friday in two separate accidents, Defence Minister Gerard Longuet said in a statement.

A flight lieutenant died of his injuries after a Gazelle helicopter came down late Friday about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Bagram in the north of the country in difficult weather conditions, said the statement. The pilot was seriously injured in the crash.

Also Friday, a corporal fatally injured himself with his own weapon while travelling in an armoured vehicle back to Tagab base, in the northeast, after a mission.

An inquiry had been launched into the "circumstances of the accident", said the statement.

The deaths bring to 61 the number of French soldiers killed in Afghanistan since 2001.

© 2011 AFP

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