World News

United States fighter jet crashes into sea in Japan

United States fighter jet crashes into sea in Japan

An American F-15 fighter jet has crashed into the sea off the island of Okinawa in southern Japan.

The Japanese military "received information that a crew member of the F15 jet, which belongs to the Kadena Air Base, ejected above the sea some 50 miles (80 kilometres) south of" Naha, the regional capital of Japan's southern Okinawa island, Itsunori Onodera told reporters.

The plane can be equipped with a number of different air-to-air weapons that included AIM-7F/M Sparrow missiles or AIM-120 AMRAAM advanced medium-range air-to-air missiles.

The incident was the second crash involving a US-made aircraft in the region in the span of one week.

Officials said the cause of the crash is unknown.

US Forces Japan confirmed the incident, which happened during a routine training mission.

More news: Unpacking Trump-Kim summit

The aircraft was conducting a routine training mission with six other F-15 fighters at the time, and the pilot, the sole person on board, was ejected, according to the United States military and the ASDF.

Kadena is the largest USA military base in Japan, which hosts around 47,000 American troops under a decades-long security alliance.

Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said he has told the USA military to take steps to ensure safety and prevent similar accidents.

"Accidents of US military aircraft are occurring repeatedly", he said, according to the Kyodo news agency. "We will continue asking them to ensure safety", he said.

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Many local residents associate the USA military base in Okinawa with crime, accidents and pollution, Reuters reported. "If that happens, we can not fulfill our responsibilities to our children and grandchildren".


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