WASHINGTON — The Pentagon has identified the Navy SEAL killed during the weekend rescue mission in Afghanistan as Petty Officer 1st Class Nicolas D. Checque of Monroeville, Pa.
A Defense Department statement says the 28-year-old Checque died of combat-related injuries but gave no further details of the mission. He was among members of SEAL Team Six, which freed an American doctor abducted by the Taliban.
It is the same team that killed Osama bin Laden last year, but it’s unclear whether Checque was on the bin Laden mission.
Officials in Afghanistan say Dr. Dilip Joseph of Colorado Springs, Colo., was rescued in eastern Afghanistan. The military says the adviser for Colorado Springs-based Morning Star Development was abducted last week and rescued after intelligence showed he was in imminent danger of injury or possible death.
President Barack Obama praised the special forces on Sunday, saying the mission was characteristic of U.S. troops’ “extraordinary courage, skill and patriotism.”
A spokesman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan said Dr. Dilip Joseph of Colorado Springs, Colo., was rescued early Sunday, local time, in eastern Afghanistan. Joseph, a medical adviser for Colorado Springs-based Morning Star Development, was rescued after intelligence showed he was in imminent danger of injury or possible death, according to the U.S. military.
Morning Star, a relief group that helps rebuild communities in Afghanistan, said in a statement that Joseph was uninjured and would probably return home in a few days. The group also said two of his co-workers were freed by their captors about 11 hours before the rescue, after hours of negotiations were conducted over three days.
Morning Star said the three workers were abducted by a group of armed men while returning from a visit to one of the organization’s rural medical clinics in eastern Kabul province. The group said the three workers were taken into mountains about 50 miles from the Pakistan border.