A British sniper in Afghanistan killed six Taliban with one precision shot from roughly eight football fields away, according to multiple British press reports.
The Ministry of Defence told the newspapers that the incident in December occurred when the 20-year-old member of the Coldstream Guards had a potential suicide bomber in his crosshairs 930 yards distant. The bullet struck the trigger switch of the bomber’s vest, which was stuffed with explosives.
The device detonated. It killed the bomber and five other insurgents.
The incident took place in Kakaran, southern Afghanistan. The British military is only now disclosing the details. It plans withdrawal by the end of the year. The name of the sharpshooter, a lance corporal, remains undisclosed.
Officials said another suicide vest with 44 pounds of explosives was found near the blast site.
Lt. Col. Richard Slack, commanding officer of 9/12 Royal Lancers, told the press that the shooting halted a major attack.
“The guy was wearing a vest,” Slack said in recounting the incident. “He was identified by the sniper moving down a tree line and coming up over a ditch. He had a shawl on. It rose up and the sniper saw he had a machine gun.
“They were in contact and he was moving to a firing position. The sniper engaged him and the guy exploded.
“There was a pause on the radio and the sniper said, ‘I think I’ve just shot a suicide bomber.' The rest of them were killed in the blast.”
Officials said the same sniper had previously killed a Taliban machine-gunner from 1,465 yards away. The sharpshooter was using a L115A3 gun, the standard-issue sniper rifle in the December shooting.