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Five more UK dead in Afghanistan

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Five more British soldiers have died in Afghanistan, bringing to eight the total killed over 24 hours, the Ministry of Defence has said.


The five, from the 2nd Battalion The Rifles, were killed in two separate blasts while on foot patrol on Friday. Next of kin have been informed.

Their deaths take the number of troops killed in Afghanistan since 2001 to 184 and higher than the 179 killed in Iraq.

Earlier, the MoD announced the deaths of three other soldiers in Helmand.

‘Taliban losing’

Conservative leader David Cameron said the “whole country will be shocked by the deaths of so many service personnel”.

He said their bravery was “outstanding” and they were “fighting to prevent terrorism on the streets of Britain”.

But he said the government “must explain its strategy in Afghanistan” and deliver key equipment to troops.

“It is a scandal that our forces still lack the helicopters they desperately require to move around in Helmand,” he said.

“Promises of more helicopters in the future are not enough. More helicopters are needed today. More helicopters would save lives.”

Britain’s Chief of Defence Staff, Sir Jock Stirrup, said Britain had “taken some very sad casualties over the last several days”.

He warned of more casualties to come but insisted the Taliban were “losing” in Afghanistan.

The five soldiers were killed while on the same foot patrol near Sangin, Helmand province.

Lieutenant Colonel Nick Richardson, spokesman for Task Force Helmand, said: “While there are no words to ease their loss, our heartfelt sympathies go to their families, friends and fellow soldiers at this very difficult time: their deaths were not in vain.”

Earlier on Friday, it was confirmed a British soldier from the 2nd Royal Tank Regiment died near Nad Ali in Helmand. That news came just hours after the deaths of another two soldiers were announced.

Those two soldiers died on Thursday evening. One was from 4th Battalion The Rifles and he was killed in a blast while on foot patrol near Nad Ali.

The second, from Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, attached to 1st Battalion Welsh Guards, was killed during an engagement with insurgent forces near Lashkar Gah.

Fifteen soldiers have died in 10 days in southern Afghanistan.

‘Hard summer’

UK troops are involved in Operation Panchai Palang, or Panther’s Claw, a major British assault against the Taliban in Helmand ahead of next month’s Afghan elections. They have been joined by about 4,000 US and 650 Afghan troops.

Britain’s Chief of Defence Staff, Sir Jock Stirrup, said it was important to “remember why our people are fighting in Afghanistan and what they are achieving through their sacrifice and their courage”.

“The mission in Afghanistan is about supporting the delivery of governance in order to reduce the opportunities for extremist terrorist groups who are a direct threat to the United Kingdom, its citizens and their interests,” he said.

“It’s very clear to everyone who has visited Helmand in particular over the last three years that where we provide the necessary degree of security for its citizens real governance is starting to emerge.”

Prime Minister Gordon Brown responded to the news of the first two deaths from Italy, where he is attending the G8 summit.

“This is a very hard summer, it’s not over but it’s vital that the international community sees through its commitment [to Afghanistan],” he said.

“There’s a recognition that this is a task that the world has got to accept together.

“We must and we will do everything we can to support our forces as they put their lives on the line.”

Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth insisted that the conflict was “winnable” but warned that there would be no early end to the fighting.

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Sweden robbers robbed a helicopter ride treasury, planning carefully is better than a large

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Police security company building the investigation

Sweden robbers robbed a helicopter ride treasury, planning carefully is better than a large

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It is believed to be a helicopter tools of crime

BEIJING, September 24 Xinhua a stolen helicopter circled the sky the dark before dawn, a group of robbers using a rope descending from the sky, drove treasury. After a series of explosions, robbed of an undisclosed amount of cash. The police had rushed to the face of looting stuck, because the scene was full of nails, police can not be close, while the police helicopter hangar entrance was placed a bomb and can not take off.

According to Taiwan’s “United Daily News” reported that, this should not happen in Hollywood gangster film of the robbery, which occurred in the lakes and mountains have always been known for quiet, Sweden. The process of the bizarre crime, the careful planning, I am afraid even if the Hollywood writers should sighed Eph.

The outskirts of the capital, Stockholm, Sweden Vastberga witnesses said there were two to three men in the early morning 5 o’clock local time on the 23rd along the rope from the helicopter fell, breaking the security company G4S roof of the building’s roof. The next is a series of huge explosions, believed to be robbers broke into the warehouse store of cash. Then, with banditry and collection bags back to the helicopter along the rope up the entire process is about 20 minutes.

Headquartered in the UK, G4S is the world’s one of the best security company and was seen at that time 10 staff in the building, no injuries. Robbed of companies are unwilling to disclose the specific amount, saying only that want to reward those who provide clues to solve the case.

Soon after, the police in Stockholm, 25 kilometers north of the lake found near a helicopter, believed to be tools of crime. A Police spokesman said the robbers at the scene and the helicopter has left a number of evidence. In addition to explosives, police believe robbers also holds an automatic rifle.

They also considered the ability to steal a helicopter and find the drivers, but also to obtain explosives and firearms, coupled with careful planning, it should be recidivist committed.

In fact, Sweden, for a major robbery was not “strangers.” 2005 vans owned by the road had been destroyed in 2006 when a passenger loading and unloading foreign currency have also been robbed. Robbery occurred a few nails and explosives were delays in police operations, but the helicopter is the first time.

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Calif. firefighters wage fierce wildfire battles

California Wildfires

Calif. firefighters wage fierce wildfire battles

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LOS ANGELES – Firefighters beat back flames licking at ocean-view estates Friday, while another wildfire raged through a dry forest above Los Angeles’ foothill suburbs. Residents nervously watched aircraft drop loads of water and retardant on nearby blazing slopes.

The dramatic success of an overnight air and ground battle against a swift-moving blaze on the Palos Verdes Peninsula was tempered by the threat from an out-of-control fire on the opposite side of Los Angeles in the steep San Gabriel Mountains above the city of La Canada Flintridge.

The blaze in Angeles National Forest had grown to nearly 8 square miles by Friday evening and was creeping east toward Los Angeles foothills suburbs, Forest Service spokeswoman Rachel Mailo said. It was 5 percent contained. Hundreds remained evacuated Friday evening and hundreds more were packed and ready to move on a moment’s notice.

“We’re boxed up and ready to go,” said La Canada Flintridge resident Steve Buntich, watching helicopters line up to siphon water from a golf course reservoir. He said his wife and children had evacuated to a friend’s house for several hours, but had since returned home.

Ash fell from the sky and huge billows of smoke rose from the mountains as Elias Yidonoy, 62, and his wife prepared to leave their La Canada Flintridge home. Their minivan was loaded with suitcases filled with clothing, documents and photographs.

“It’s wait and see,” said Yidonoy, who with his wife had also left their home for several hours overnight and then returned.

The foothill residents were among more than a thousand Californians chased from their homes by the threat of wildfires. The Palos Verdes Peninsula fire roared to life on the south Los Angeles County coast Thursday night and spread rapidly up canyons in the city of Rancho Palos Verdes. As many as 1,500 people fled as hundreds of firefighters rushed to protect homes in the fire’s path in adjacent Rolling Hills Estates.

“The fire was stopped right at the backyards of those homes,” county fire Chief Deputy John Tripp told a morning news conference.

Calm, windless conditions allowed water-dropping helicopters with spotlights to work much of the night. Six homes received minor exterior damage, and the only structures destroyed were an outbuilding and gazebo. No injuries were reported.

After daybreak, no flames were showing and all evacuations were lifted, but Tripp warned that fire could still surge out of the uncontained area.

“We are not out of the woods yet,” he said.

Firefighters continued to work the ashen landscape, and a helicopter dropped loads of water sucked from the Pacific Ocean.

The fire above La Canada Flintridge was moving eastward and residents of adjacent Altadena were likely to see flames, said U.S. Forest Service spokesman Stanton Florea. A major goal was to keep the fire from spreading up Mount Wilson, where many of the region’s broadcast and communications antennas and the historic Mount Wilson Observatory are located, Florea said.

“We’ve had some success but unfortunately not enough to say we have any containment,” Florea said.

Elsewhere in the Angeles National Forest, more than 1,600 firefighters working in 102-degree heat had achieved 60 percent containment of a 3.1-square-mile blaze in a canyon above the city of Azusa. No structures were threatened or damaged

“We’re getting a handle on it. It’s just taking a little longer than expected,” said U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Rachel Mailo.

To the north in the state’s coastal midsection, a nearly 8-square-mile fire threatening Pinnacles National Monument kept 100 homes under evacuation orders near the Monterey County town of Soledad. The blaze, only 15 percent contained, was started by agricultural fireworks used to scare animals away from crops.

In the southern part of Monterey County, firefighters had 100 percent containment of a 5 1/4-square-mile fire that had threatened 20 ranch homes. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency Friday in Los Angeles and Monterey counties.

“It’s fire season, clearly,” he said. “There’s tremendous amount of heat all over the state.”

A nearly 3 1/2-square-mile fire in Yosemite National Park was 10 percent contained, said staff member Erik Skinrud. The Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office ordered guests and staff at the Yosemite View Lodge, just outside the park’s western gate, to evacuate Friday afternoon due to the fire. People without lodging were offered beds in a shelter in Mariposa staffed by the Red Cross.

Residents of the nearby community of El Portal watched as water-dropping helicopters refilled from the Merced River.

Park spokeswoman Kari Cobb said officials closed a campground and a portion of Highway 120, anticipating that the fire would spread north toward Tioga Road, the highest elevation route through the Sierra. The number of firefighters was expected to double over the weekend to 1,000.

Southeast of Los Angeles in Riverside County, a 1 1/2-square-mile fire in the San Bernardino National Forest was 5 percent contained. Temperatures reached 106 degrees in the region. In San Diego County, three fires totaling 1,000 acres burned on the Camp Pendleton Marine base but posed no threat to buildings, Cpl. Gabriela Gonzalez said.

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