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Tpr Sheppard: IED group caught

By Channel 4 News

Updated on 28 February 2010

Trooper Pete Sheppard, stationed in Afghanistan, writes: "Been a quiet day today, we had a lie in this morning. 0700 start. A few of the troops went out on patrols with the aim of interacting with the local community.

The mortars

Trooper Pete Sheppard is a radio operator with the Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF), which is part of Operation Moshtarak against insurgents in Helmand Province.

The Ministry of Defence announced Sergeant Paul Fox, attached to the BRF died on Friday 26 February following an explosion in Nad Ali.

"Even after all activity yesterday the locals seemed to be pro-ISAF as they told us of a few possible IED locations. Sure enough, in one of these locations we had confirmation of a device. Another good result!

"We also found out today that we are staying out for a few more days on top of the date we were due in. The lads aren't too thrilled with this but it is a case of getting on with the job. We have had a big impact on the area removing the key insurgent group yesterday.

"It doesn't take away the sadness of our loss but the boys feel better knowing that the guys who laid the IED that killed Foxy will no longer be a threat to this area.

"The weather has been really unpredictable. The last few days it’s been quite hot, however today started off hot and then about 1600 we started to get thunder and lightning with outbursts of heavy rain.

Read more from Trooper Pete Sheppard and coverage of Op Moshtarak
- Tpr Sheppard: identifying insurgents on the frontline
- Tpr Sheppard: rest after ten days fighting the Taliban
- Embedded with British troops in Helmand

"Meanwhile, this afternoon one of our troops came under small arms fire. They called "contact" over the net and fire was returned onto the insurgent positions. We could hear the events unfold over the radio net. Moments later the guys fired a series of mortar rounds from our location to deter the enemy.

"It seems to have worked. They melted away into the area and things had died down by supper time.

"I can't wait to get back to Bastion again now. I am looking forward to a proper shower, some nice food and a good sleep on a camp bed.

"Not that long left to go. Maybe…"

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