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U.S. Soldier Who Left Post In Afghanistan Asks Obama For Pardon

U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl (right) leaves a courthouse after an arraignment hearing for his court-martial in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, in December 2015.

A U.S. Army sergeant charged with desertion for leaving his combat post in Afghanistan in 2009 has asked President Barack Obama for a pardon.

The White House confirmed on December 3 that Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl had asked for the presidential pardon before President-elect Donald Trump takes office on January 20.

Trump made critical comments about Bergdahl during his presidential campaign, calling him "a no-good traitor who should have been executed."

Trump also has criticized a 2014 prisoner swap that won Bergdahl’s release after five years as a prisoner of Afghanistan’s Taliban.

The 30-year-old Bergdahl is facing a court-martial with a possible life sentence.

The White House did not comment on his pending case or what Obama’s response would be to the request for the pardon.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters