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US begins to carry out mission to lift F-35C fighter jets in the South China Sea


US F-35C Fighter jet

Hsmilitarycom: The U.S. Navy said on Tuesday it was making arrangements to recover an F-35C warplane that fell into the South China Sea after a landing mishap this week.

Seven U.S. military personnel were hurt in Monday’s accident on the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and the pilot ejected, the Navy said.

"I can confirm the aircraft impacted the flight deck during landing and subsequently fell to the water," said Lieutenant Nicholas Lingo, spokesperson for the U.S. 7th Fleet.

"The U.S. Navy is making recovery operations arrangements for the F-35C aircraft."

Asked about an unsourced media report suggesting there were fears that the aircraft could fall into the hands of China, which claims most of the South China Sea, Lingo replied, referring to the People's Republic of China: "We cannot speculate on what the PRC's intentions are on this matter."

US F-35C Fighter jet

It was the second crash involving an F-35, which is made by Lockheed Martin, and a carrier in just over two months.

An F-35 from Britain's HMS Queen Elizabeth crashed into the Mediterranean Sea in November, though the pilot ejected and was safely returned to the ship. Britain's Ministry of Defence said that aircraft was subsequently recovered.

US F-35C Fighter jet

Earlier this month, a South Korean F-35A fighter made an emergency landing during training.

Source: CNBC

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