U.S. Continues to Fly F-16 Fighters despite Suspension Request


Tokyo, Dec. 3 (Jiji Press)--The U.S. military had continued to operate its F-16 fighter jets in Japan, even after being asked to ground them by Japan's Defense Ministry, it has been learned.

The request came after a F-16 jet belonging to the U.S. military's Misawa Air Base in the northeastern Japan prefecture of Aomori dropped two fuel tanks on Tuesday evening before making an emergency landing at Aomori Airport.

The ministry plans to ask the U.S. side once again to suspend the flights of its F-16 fighters until their safety is confirmed.

"An incident like this that causes concern among local residents should have never happened," Japanese Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said on Wednesday.

Despite being asked not to fly F-16 fighter jets until the cause of the incident and the safety of the jets are confirmed, the U.S. military resumed the operations of the jets at the Misawa base from Thursday, according to the ministry.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press