Mayo Soldier Killed In Afghanistan

A Co Mayo man fighting in Afghanistan has been killed along with a colleague while serving with British forces.

Robert McKibben, 32, from Westport, died when the vehicle he was travelling in was hit by an explosive device on patrol in Helmand province.

A spokesperson for the British forces in Helmand, Commander Paula Rowe, described the deaths on Wednesday as "tragic".

"This is a tragic blow to us all in the Task Force, but our loss is nothing compared to that of their families and loved ones," he said.

Local priest Mícheál Mannion in Westport said the family and community were devastated by the news.

Two weeks ago, it was revealed that a British commander with the elite Special Air Service (SAS) had resigned, blaming the failure to provide his troops with heavy armoured vehicles for the deaths of some of his soldiers.

Major Sebastian Morley, commander of SAS (Special Air Service) troops in Afghanistan, had "resigned in disgust".

On Wednesday Gordon Brown, the British Prime Minister, announced Britain would buy $1.13bn worth of 700 new and upgraded armoured vehicles to protect its forces in Afghanistan.

See: Two Royal Marines Killed In Explosion


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

08 April 2024
PSNI Investigating Fatal Collision Near Bready, Co Tyrone
An investigation has been launched following a fatal road traffic collision near Bready, Co Tyrone. At around 1.40pm on Sunday, 07 April, police responded to a report of a single vehicle collision on the Victoria Road. When police arrived it was discovered that a white Seat Leon had left the carriageway close to the junction with Grangefoyle Road.
08 April 2024
Over 660 Motorists Found Speeding Over Easter Bank Holidays
More than 660 motorists were caught breaking the speed limit across the Causeway Coast and Glens during the Easter bank holiday weekend – an increase of 22% from 2022. Chief Inspector Sinead McIldowney said: "The Safety Camera Vans were deployed at various locations across the North Coast and the increase in these detections is a worrying trend.
07 May 2013
Apology And Pardon For 'Deserters'
Some 5,000 soldiers, once branded deserters, will be offered an official apology this afternoon in the Dáil, alongside a formal pardon. The so-called deserters had joined British forces in the fight against Nazi Germany in World War II.
08 March 2010
Legion Remembers Murdered Sappers
Members of the North's Royal British Legion, flanked by standard bearers, have laid poppy wreaths at the gates of a British army base where two soldiers lost their lives exactly a year ago. The solemn memorial service was held yesterday to mark the first anniversary of the deaths of two soldiers shot dead by dissident republicans.
16 March 2012
Michael Collins "Criminal Card" To Be Auctioned
An original “criminal card” for Michael Collins has been discovered and is due to be sold at auction next month. Issued by British Intelligence during the War of Independence the fold-up, pocket-sized card bears a photo of the man described as the “Chief of IRA organizer of all ambushes and murders”.