Unlawful killing verdict over Basra bomb
THREE British soldiers – two of them Scots – were killed in Iraq by a roadside bomb after leaving their armoured vehicle to check for hazards, an inquest heard yesterday.
Private Scott Kennedy, 20, Pte Jamie Kerr, 20, and Corporal Paul Joszko, 28, were killed after the device was detonated in Basra City at 1am on 28 June last year.
The two Scots were from Fife. Pte Kennedy, of Dunfermline, and Private Kerr, of Cowdenbeath, both served in the Black Watch, 3rd Battalion the Royal Regiment of Scotland.
Cpl Joszko, of Mountain Ash, Wales, was a member of the 2nd Battalion, the Royal Regiment of Wales.
They were part of a four-man dismount team attached to the 4 Rifles Battle Group, whose job was to check roads for bombs. After they got out of their Warrior armoured vehicle at a suspect junction in the al-Amtahiya district, an explosive device went off.
Cpl Joszko was within a yard of the exploding bomb. He and Pte Kennedy died instantly, the inquest at Trowbridge, Wiltshire, heard.
Pte Kerr died a short time later. The fourth member of the Warrior team, Pte Kieron Flowers, survived.
David Masters, the Wiltshire coroner, recorded verdicts of unlawful killing and praised the bravery and courage of the three soldiers and their surviving colleagues.
In another Warrior vehicle behind the dismount team was Paul Brinkworth, a 2 Royal Welsh private, who watched as Cpl Joszko raised his arm – before he was shocked to see him being blown away almost immediately.
"I saw a big orange flash engulf him," he told the inquest.
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