MOSCOW, July 23 (Itar-Tass) — The pilot of the F-16 fighter, which crashed in the Russian exclusive economic zone has been taken to an American ship, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed on Monday.
“According to the Border Guard Service of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), on July 22 an F-16 fighter jet of the US Air Force that was en route from Japan to Alaska crashed in Russia’s exclusive economic zone east of the Kuril Islands,” the ministry recalled. “The plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean at a distance of 185 nautical miles from the Matua Island, located in the middle part of the Kuril Islands’ chain. The pilot ejected, then was picked up by a Japanese vessel that was passing by and later transferred to the American ship.”
“Immediately upon receiving information about the crash the Russian side took the necessary steps to organize a rescue operation,” the ministry noted. “It dispatched to the scene the Antonov An-72 plane of the FSB and the Antias border patrol vessel that examined the area. It was established that the US fighter sank at a depth of 5 kilometers.” “According to preliminary information, there is no threat to the ecological situation there,” stressed the Russian Foreign Ministry.