Relatives of soldiers killed in Iraq have secured a victory in the latest round of a compensation fight after the Court of Appeal said they could pursue damages claims against the Government.
They had argued that the Ministry of Defence (MoD) failed to provide armoured vehicles or equipment which could have saved lives and should pay compensation.
The MoD argued that decisions about battlefield equipment were for politicians and military commanders.
Lawyers representing the troops' families hailed the ruling as a "landmark decision".
Standing outside the Royal Courts of Justice, Sue Smith, mother of Private Phillip Hewett, who was killed in Iraq seven years ago, vowed to continue the fight.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence said of today's ruling:
Appeal judges also ruled that relatives could not make damages claims under human rights legislation, but lawyers said that fight would go on and be taken to the Supreme Court
Legal action was started as a result of the deaths of a number of British soldiers following the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Corporal Stephen Allbutt, 35, of Sneyd Green, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, was killed in a "friendly fire" incident in March 2003, judges were told.
He died after a Challenger 2 tank was hit by another Challenger 2 tank.
Soldiers Dan Twiddy, of Stamford, Lincolnshire, and Andy Julien, of Bolton, Greater Manchester, were badly hurt in the incident.
Corporal Allbut's widow Debi, said of today's ruling:
Private Hewett, 21, of Tamworth, died in July 2005 after a Snatch Land Rover was blown up.
Similar explosions claimed the lives of Private Lee Ellis, 23, of Wythenshawe, Greater
Manchester, in February 2006, and Lance Corporal Kirk Redpath, 22, of Romford, Essex, in August 2007.
James Arbuthnot, the chairman of the House of Commons Defence Committee, said Court of Appeal's ruling will have a "very big effect" on the MoD
He told BBC Radio 4's The World At One: