British soldier killed in battle in Afghanistan

A British soldier was killed Saturday in a battle with Taliban fighters in southern Afghanistan, officials said. The soldier, who has not been named, was taking part in an operation to retake the Taliban-controlled town of Musa Qala, in Helmand province, the Defense Ministry said. The soldier's relatives had been informed, the ministry said, but released no further details. Taliban militants overran Musa Qala in February, four months after British troops left the town following a contentious peace agreement that gave security responsibilities to Afghan elders. Taliban fighters have been in control of the town ever since. A total of 86 British troops have died in Afghanistan since 2001.