Court-Martialed Navy SEAL Faces Removal From Elite Special Force After Trump Restores His Rank

© AP Photo / Julie WatsonNavy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, right, walks with his wife, Andrea Gallagher, as they arrive to military court on Naval Base San Diego, Thursday, June 20, 2019, in San Diego.
Navy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, right, walks with his wife, Andrea Gallagher, as they arrive to military court on Naval Base San Diego, Thursday, June 20, 2019, in San Diego.  - Sputnik International
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US Navy SEAL Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, 40, was accused of committing war crimes while deployed to Mosul in Iraq in 2017.

Gallagher's elite rank - which was recently restored by US President Donald Trump following the soldier's court-martial - could be removed as the US military has already notified him.

Trump also pardoned Army First Lieutenant Clint Lorance and Army Major Mathew Golsteyn, who were accused separately of war crimes, along with reinstating Gallagher's rank.

Gallagher had been demoted following a July conviction for posing in a photo with the body of a dead terrorist during a 2017 deployment in Iraq, but was cleared of murder charges stemming from the enemy fighter’s fatal stabbing.

According to media reports, if Gallagher loses his rank as a SEAL, he would either have to retire or find a different position in the Navy. Reuters reported Wednesday, citing Gallagher's defence team, that the move to take away Gallagher's Trident pin designating him a SEAL was being driven by Naval Special Warfare commander Rear Admiral Collin Green.

Gallagher would have reportedly faced a possible life sentence had he been convicted on the charges he faced.

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