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British Newspaper Journalist Killed In Afghanistan

LONDON (Reuters) -- A journalist for Britain's "Sunday Mirror" newspaper has been killed in an explosion in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defense said today.

It said Rupert Hamer was accompanying a patrol to the northwest of Nawa in Helmand province when the vehicle he was in struck an improvised explosive device.

"Sunday Mirror" photographer Philip Coburn was wounded in the attack and remains in a stable but serious condition, it said.

Both Hamer and Coburn were embedded with the U.S. Marine Corps.

One U.S. Marine and a member of the Afghan National Army were also killed in the explosion.

Hamer is the second embedded foreign journalist to be killed in Afghanistan in the last two weeks. Canadian journalist Michelle Lang was killed on December 30.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown expressed his sorrow at the death and praised the professionalism of journalists embedded with NATO troops.

"I was deeply saddened by this tragic news, and my heartfelt thoughts and sympathies are with the families, friends, and colleagues of Rupert and Philip," he said.

"Their courage, skill and dedication to reporting from the frontline was incredibly important and ensured that the world could see and read about our heroic troops."

Hamer was an experienced war reporter who had covered conflicts in Iraq, the Middle East, and Central Asia. He leaves behind a wife and three children.