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US F-15 Crashes off Okinawa; Pilot Safe


FILE - A U.S. Air Force's F-15 aircraft takes off at Kadena U.S. Air Force Base on Japan's southwestern island of Okinawa, June 16, 2009.

A U.S. F-15 fighter jet crashed into the sea off the Japanese island of Okinawa during a routine training mission Monday.

The pilot ejected and was picked up by Japanese forces. He is reported to have a broken leg, but is otherwise safe.

Japan's Kyodo news agency says the jet was stationed at the Kadena Air Base and crashed about 80 kilometers off the coast of southern Okinawa.

The American military presence on Okinawa has irritated Japanese civilians on the island and created tension in the otherwise warm relations between the U.S. and Japanese militaries.

There have been several accidents involving U.S. aircraft as well as crimes by U.S. servicemen on Okinawa, including rapes, fights and drunken-driving incidents.

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