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RAF Hercules joins search for missing British sailors

An RAF Hercules aircraft is travelling to join the search for the four missing British yachtsmen, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed.

We can confirm that the UK will be providing military assistance in the search for the four British sailors.

A C130 Aircraft was deployed from RAF Brize Norton at 0500 on 21 May and has started to move towards the search area where it will join the international Search and Rescue effort.

– MOD spokesperson

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said:

The RAF's contribution to the search operation for the four missing British sailors will provide additional capability and resilience to the resumed search led by U.S. and Canadian forces.

We all hope that the extensive resources being provided by our allies and the further support from the UK can help locate the missing yachtsmen as soon as possible.

– Philip Hammond, Defence Secretary

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Leaked photos taken after 'Battle of Bastion' firefight

Graphic pictures which appear to show at least one UK serviceman posing with a dead Taliban fighter were taken after an attack by insurgents on Camp Bastion in September 2012.

Members of No 51 Squadron RAF Regiment, together with US Marine service personnel and civilian security contractors, defeated the attackers after a four-hour firefight with support from helicopters in what came to be known as the Battle of Bastion.

The leaked images showed the aftermath of the Battle of Bastion. Credit: Live Leak

The RAF Regiment is the ground fighting force of the Royal Air Force. Two members of the regiment have been withdrawn from the front line over the leaked photos.

Last month a report by MPs said British commanders had to "bear a degree of responsibility" for failing to prevent the 2012 raid, which left two US marines dead.

Prince Harry was serving at the base as a member of the Army Air Corps during the time of the attack.

Images show serviceman 'posing with dead militant'

The RAF has launched an investigation over photos apparently showing at least one serviceman posing beside the body of a dead Taliban insurgent in Afghanistan.

The serviceman gives the thumbs-up sign next to the corpse of a dead fighter. Credit: Live Leak
A serviceman poses with a dead body. Credit: Live Leak
The images were said to be taken following an insurgent attack at Camp Bastion. Credit: Live Leak

RAF takes Taliban photo incident 'extremely seriously'

The Ministry of Defence said "inappropriate actions will not be tolerated" after photos emerged appearing to show an RAF serviceman giving a thumbs-up sign next to the body of a dead Taliban fighter.

An MoD spokesman said:

Inappropriate actions will not be tolerated in the armed forces; the RAF is treating this incident extremely seriously and has launched a military police investigation.

As this incident is subject to an ongoing investigation it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.

– MoD spokesman

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RAF probes images of serviceman 'posing with Taliban body'

The RAF has launched an investigation after photographs emerged appearing to show a British serviceman giving a thumbs-up sign while posing with the dead body of a Taliban soldier.

The images, which originally appeared on the website Live Leak, were taken in Afghanistan following a 2012 militant attack on the British military base Camp Bastion.

Helicopter crash servicemen are repatriated

A poignant ceremony marked the return of five British servicemen who were killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan as they were repatriated to the UK.

Hundreds of people gathered in the sunshine at Carterton, Oxon, to pay their respects to the fallen personnel as they returned to British soil.

Captain Thomas Clarke, Warrant Officer Spencer Faulkner and Corporal James Walters, all of the Army Air Corps (AAC), were serving as the Lynx aircraft's three-man team when they died.

They lost their lives together with Flight Lieutenant Rakesh Chauhan of the Royal Air Force and Lance Corporal Oliver Thomas of the Intelligence Corps, who were believed to have been passengers on the flight.

Poignant ceremony as five servicemen are repatriated

Mourners paid their respects. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Family and friends watched a poignant ceremony as five British servicemen killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan were repatriated to the UK. Hundreds of people gathered in the sunshine at Carterton, Oxon, to pay their respects to the fallen personnel as they returned to British soil.

Friends and family laid flowers. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Family members then lined the road on Norton Way, clutching flowers including red and white roses, lilies, brightly coloured tulips and yellow daffodils. The street fell silent at 4.52pm, when the bell tolled to mark the arrival of the servicemen's families at the Memorial Garden.

Cameron: 'Thoughts with families of five servicemen'

The Prime Minister has said that his "thoughts go out" to the friends and families of the five servicemen being repatriated at RAF Brize Norton.

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