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The number of soldiers who took their own lives in 2008 rose to as many as 143, up from 115 the previous year, the army said.
Among the deaths, 128 have been "confirmed suicides and 15 are still being investigated for a determination," Lieutenant Michelle Martin-Hing said.
On average "90 per cent of unconfirmed go on to be confirmed," she said.
The total has climbed in each of the past four years as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have intensified, according to the army.
Army officials said no single factor explained the increased incidence of suicides.
But General Peter Chiarelli, vice chief of the army, tied the rise to the lengthened combat deployments and high tempo of operations that have strained soldiers and their families.
"There is no doubt in my mind that stress is a factor in the trend we are seeing," he said.
Army statistics released on Thursday (local time) found that 30 per cent of those who committed suicide last year were deployed at the time of their death, and of those more than three-quarters were on their first deployment.
About 35 per cent had never been deployed before, another 35 per cent killed themselves after being deployed, in most cases more than a year after returning to their home bases.
Last year's suicide rate among active duty soldiers rose to 20.2 per 100,000, surpassing a demographically adjusted national suicide rate of 19.5 per 100,000 in 2005, the latest year on record.
The army has responded to the growing problem with more suicide prevention programs, efforts to screen soldiers for mental health problems, and campaigns to reduce the stigma that prevents soldiers from seeking treatment.
There is no doubt in my mind that stress is a factor in the trend we are seeing