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Soldiers awarded medals after Afghanistan tour of duty

Nearly 400 soldiers have been awarded medals following a six month tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Many were handed out by His Royal Highness, The Duke of Edinburgh. The troops, from 1 Close Support Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, had been in Helmand Province, as the handover of power to the Afghan National Police continues.

The presentation was at Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire.

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More pictures from the Lincoln anti-drones protest

Protesters before the march began at South Park in Lincoln Credit: ITV News Central

Around 400 people have marched from link to RAF Waddington against a new fleet of armed drones being based in the UK for the first time.

The drones, which were previously operated from a United States Air Force base in Nevada, are used to support ground troops in Afghanistan.

Marchers arrived from Peterborough Credit: ITV News Central
Credit: ITV News Central
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Hundreds start drone protest march to RAF Waddington

Crowds of peace campaigners gather in Lincoln for start of anti-drone protest march Credit: ITV Central

Hundreds of peace campaigners have started marching from Lincoln to RAF Waddington, in protest of a new fleet of armed drones being based in the UK for the first time.

Protesters preparing their banners before the march takes place Credit: ITV Central

The RAF began remotely operating its Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles earlier this week from the airbase in Lincolnshire.

Previously operated from a United States Air Force base in Nevada, the aircraft are used to support coalition ground forces in Afghanistan.

Banners are laid out at South Park in Lincoln before the march takes place Credit: ITV Central

Members of the Stop The War Coalition, CND, The Drone Campaign Network and War on Want are estimated to walk the four mile route in around two hours.

It's expected to take the protesters two hours to walk the four mile route from Lincoln to RAF WAddington. Credit: ITV Central

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Route of armed drone protest march in Lincoln

The protest march will start at South Park in Lincoln Credit: ITV Central

Hundreds of protesters are due to start marching from Lincoln to RAF Waddington against the use of armed drone aircraft.

It's the first time the Ministry of Defence has based the spy planes in the UK, which will be deployed over Afghanistan.

Today's march will start at South Park, down the A15 Cross O'Cliff hill and down Grantham Road to a Peace camp set up outside the airbase.

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Police tweet details about today's Drone protest march

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Sections of Cross O'Cliff hill and A15 will be subject to phased closures early afternoon. Follow our tweets for info http://t.co/L6niGo8m8l

Lincolnshire Police will be live tweeting details of road closures during today's protest march over armed drone planes being based at RAF Waddington.

Hundreds are expected to walk from South Park in Lincoln to the base. It's the first time the RAF has based the crewless aircraft in the UK.

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Surveillance drones flown for first time from UK

The new aircraft, known as 13 Squadron, which were officially "stood up" in October, started flying missions over Afghanistan this week from their base in Lincolnshire.

The drones will be used in Afghanistan Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire

The hi-tech Reaper drones are primarily used to gather intelligence on enemy activity on the ground, but they also carry 500lb bombs and Hellfire missiles for precision strikes on insurgents.

An MoD spokesman said they had been carrying out missions including intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, but would not comment on exactly what individual missions had been flown in the past week by drones piloted from the UK.

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