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|Foreign secretary flies into Iraq |
(about 5 hours later)
Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett has arrived in Iraq for a surprise visit as controversy goes on over UK deployments there and in Afghanistan.
The new head of the Army, General Sir Richard Dannatt, has warned that his soldiers can "just" cope with the demands placed on them by ministers.
Tony Blair has said the UK must "stand firm" against global terrorism threat.
His words came after one soldier was killed in Kabul and two died in a bomb attack near Basra, in southern Iraq.
The latest military casualties follow the deaths of 14 servicemen killed when their Nimrod MR2 aircraft came down in Afghanistan on Saturday.
Mrs Beckett is making her first visit to Iraq since she took office and plans to meet Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki as well as other politicians.
He loved flying and he died doing what he loved and what he believed in to ensure that the people of Afghanistan can enjoy the same freedom that he did Andy Knight Crash victim's brother href="/1/hi/scotland/north_east/5312112.stm" class="">Family tribute to airman href="/1/hi/england/cornwall/5312832.stm" class="">Tributes to Nimrod victim href="/1/hi/uk/5314358.stm" class="">'Fire reported' by Nimrod
"While security and the political process tops our agenda, I will also be discussing the other challenges before the Iraqi government," she said.
"The economy suffered decades of under-investment and mismanagement by Saddam's brutal regime which have left the Iraqis with a huge challenge."
After the deaths, Mr Blair said: "It's so important for us to make sure we stand firm in Afghanistan and stop that country being a training ground for the export of terrorism around the world."
The two British soldiers killed near Basra on Monday were part of a patrol targeted by a roadside bomb and small arms fire near the town of Ad Dayr at about 1300 local time.
Another two soldiers were injured - one seriously - and have been taken to the Shaibah Logistics Base by helicopter for emergency medical treatment.
We couldn't do the job if we had a hundred thousand men there. Sir Peter Tapsell, MP href="/1/hi/uk/5312344.stm" class="">Soldiers killed in Iraq
The Ministry of Defence said the British soldier killed in the suicide bombing in Kabul on Monday was from the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland.
A further three soldiers were injured.
The latest fatalities bring the death toll of UK forces personnel in Afghanistan to 37 since the start of operations in November 2001.
Senior Conservative MP Sir Peter Tapsell told the BBC that British forces were involved in a battle which could not be won.
"We couldn't do the job if we had a 100,000 men there."