US Navy Seal deserter killed in Ukraine

At least five Americans have been killed in Ukraine since Russia invaded

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A US Navy Seal was killed this week while fighting in Ukraine, officials confirmed on Friday.

The US Navy said in a statement to ABC News that “a former sailor, Daniel W Swift, was killed in Ukraine on January 18, 2023".

It also noted that “the Navy Absentee Collection and Information Centre confirmed that the sailor was in an active deserter status since March 11, 2019".

“We cannot speculate as to why the former sailor was in Ukraine,” the statement added.

Mr Swift's family confirmed his death to Rolling Stone magazine after Time first reported the news on Friday.

The former Seal was an Oregon native who received medals from his role in US campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan after he enlisted in 2005.

Navy Seals are one of the most highly advanced and intensive units in the US military and Mr Swift reportedly participated in several “special warfare unit” assignments as recently as 2017.

The US State Department did not name Mr Swift to news organisations but confirmed an American death in Ukraine and said it was working with the family.

Mr Swift is the latest American to die in Ukraine, after volunteers from around the world entered the conflict to help Ukrainian troops repel Russia's invasion.

At least five Americans have been killed in the war so far.

Russia's invasion of Ukraine is nearing its one-year mark. US officials have said it will be “very difficult” for Ukraine to “militarily eject the Russian forces” from all of its territory this year.

Updated: January 20, 2023, 11:41 PM