Journalist killed in Afghan bomb

Four Canadian soldiers and a journalist were killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan’s west, Nato said.

Nato said that the four Canadian troops and a reporter embedded with their unit died when their armoured vehicle hit a bomb while on an afternoon patrol south of Kandahar city, the biggest loss of life for Canadian forces in Afghanistan this year.

The Canadian Press identified the journalist as Michelle Lang, a 34-year-old health reporter with the Calgary Herald, who was on her first assignment to Afghanistan.

The military has not disclosed the names of the troops because relatives had not all been notified.

“We are all very saddened to hear this tragic news,” Alberta Health and Wellness Minister Ron Liepert said in a statement.

“Michelle covered health issues with professionalism, accuracy and thoroughness. She was tenacious in her quest to inform Albertans, and for her diligence she was very well respected.”

It was the second lethal strike against the Canadian force in a week. One Canadian soldier and an Afghan soldier were killed December 23 during a foot patrol in Panjwayi district of Kandahar province.

The latest casualties bring to 32 the number of Canadian forces killed in Afghanistan this year; in all, 138 have died in the war.

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