British dead in Afghanistan equals Falklands toll
Two more British soldiers were killed in Afghanistan at the weekend, bringing the country's death toll there to the same as the 1982 Falklands war, the Ministry of Defence said Monday.
The soldiers from the Royal Scots Borderers, 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland were killed by an explosion in Sangin in Helmand Province on Sunday, taking the British death toll in Afghanistan to 255 since 2001.
"They were on a foot patrol bringing security to local people... when the explosion caught them... Two of our comrades have been cruelly taken from us, but their bravery and fortitude will not be forgotten," said a spokesman.
The politically symbolic toll comes as Prime Minister Gordon Brown battles to persuade a sceptical British public that the Afghan conflict is worthwhile, and as he struggles to avoid defeat in elections due by June.
Britain ousted Argentinean forces from the Falkland Islands, known in Spanish as the Malvinas, in a 74-day war that left 649 Argentines and 255 Britons dead. Then premier Margaret Thatcher's popularity surged as a result.
The latest British deaths in Afghanistan came as Britain braced for a surge in casualties in a major assault against Taliban-led militants in southern Afghanistan.