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President Obama: One Navy SEAL Member Dead In Rescue Operation

Early Sunday, a U.S. special operator died during a successful mission to rescue an American doctor being held by the Taliban.

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President Obama announced in a statement Sunday that one U.S. Special Forces team member had died in a successful mission to rescue an American doctor from the Taliban early Sunday.

The American, identified as Colorado-based nonprofit doctor Dilip Joseph, was held by the Taliban for nearly five days. He was rescued along with three colleagues, Afghan doctors and their Afghan driver. They were kidnapped Wednesday by Taliban gunman after visiting a rural medical clinic outside of the Afghan capital of Kabul.

President Obama's statement:

"Yesterday, our special operators in Afghanistan rescued an American citizen in a mission that was characteristic of the extraordinary courage, skill and patriotism that our troops show every day. Tragically, we lost one of our special operators in this effort. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, just as we must always honor our troops and military families. He gave his life for his fellow Americans, and he and his teammates remind us once more of the selfless service that allows our nation to stay strong, safe and free."

Joseph is expected to return to America in a few days.

Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Andrew Kaczynski at

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