Tributes to Michael Foley killed by rogue Afghan gunman

Lance Corporal Michael Foley
Lance Corporal Michael Foley Photo: MOD

Tributes have been paid to a soldier from Nelson in Lancashire killed in Afghanistan earlier this week as a rogue Afghan soldier turned on British troops.

23 year old Michael Foley was serving with the Adjutant General's Corp at the British base in Lashkar Gar in Helmand Province when the Afghan soldier attempted to break into the base, opening fire on those who confronted him.

Michael was killed along side a soldier from the Royal Marines. A third British soldier was seriously injured.

It's understood that the Afghan national attempted to enter the British base, claiming to be with a visiting dignitary. When challenged by British troops, he then opened fire at close range.

The news of Michaels death has been treated with shock and sadness around his home town of Nelson. Today his former head teacher. Janet Walsh from Colne Primary School spoke of her sadness at his death, describing Michael as a strong, popular character.

Local Conservative MP Andrew Stephenson paid tribute to all our service men and women, adding that as with Lance Corporal Jordan Bankcroft from nearby Earby, Michael Foley had paid the ultimate sacrifice for peace in Afghanistan.

The shootings took place last Sunday, Earlier this week Defence Secretary Philip Hammond told the House of Commons that "Our thoughts, as ever, are with the families, for whom this will be a deeply personal tragedy" . Mr Hammond confirmed that an urgent inquiry would now be launched into the deaths.