Search-and-rescue efforts are under way after two U.S. military aircraft collided in midair, crashing into the Pacific Ocean about 200 miles off the coast of Japan early Thursday, the U.S. Marine Corps said.
At least two Marines have been rescued by the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force. Five others are still missing. There were five crew members on the KC-130 tanker aircraft and two on the F/A-18 fighter jet. The first rescued Marine was from the fighter jet and is in stable condition. The condition of the second rescued Marine is not known.
The planes “had launched from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni and were conducting regularly scheduled training when the mishap occurred,” a statement issued by the Marines said. “The circumstances of the mishap are currently under investigation.”
The U.S. military has about 50,000 troops stationed in Japan.
VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb contributed to this report.