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Sunday, April 01, 2007

Armed forces' suicides exceed numbers of combat deaths

Armed forces' suicides surpass combat deaths - Independent


"More servicemen and women have committed suicide over the past two decades than have died in military action, according to new figures.

The latest death toll for those in the armed forces who have taken their own lives has risen to 687 compared with 438 killed during active service in major conflicts such as the Gulf, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.

Ministry of Defence (MoD) figures released this weekend also reveal that the number of suicides among servicemen and women has risen by at least 49 in a year. This is more than three times the number of soldiers killed since the start of war in Afghanistan in 2001 and has raised fresh concerns about the mental welfare of troops. Those most at risk of taking their own lives are soldiers in their early 20s and teenage army recruits."