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Longer tours of duty for UK troops

British troops are to serve longer tours of duty in Afghanistan, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond has announced.

Forces deploying to Afghanistan this October will serve an eight-month tour of duty before coming home, rather than six months, as was previously the norm.

As the British Army prepares to withdraw the bulk of its deployment by the end of 2014, some troops sent to Afghanistan next year will stay for as long as nine months, Mr Hammond said in a statement to the House of Commons.

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