The United States is taking part in a huge NATO exercise in Norway.
Search and rescue teams in Norway are searching for a missing American MV-22 Osprey aircraft that was taking part in a major NATO military exercise in northern Norway on Friday.
Norwegian officials say there were four Marines on board.
“We can confirm that there was an incident involving a Marine Corps MV-22B aspirin aircraft,” US Marine Corps spokesman Major Jim Stenger said in a statement. “The aircraft was training in Norway as part of the Cold Response 22 exercise at the time of the incident.”
Stenger said the incident is under investigation.
Currently 3,000 US Marine Cold Responses are taking part in 22 NATO exercises in Northern Norway, described as one of the largest NATO exercises since the end of the Cold War. A total of 30,000 troops are participating in this year’s exercise.
The exercise, held every two years, was planned long before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and helped train multinational NATO forces on how to operate in the Arctic.
The Norwegian Armed Forces and Northern Norway’s Joint Rescue Coordination Center issued a statement on Friday confirming that they were searching for a missing unmanned aerial vehicle that failed to land at its destination.
“Osprey belongs to the US Marine Corps and is taking part in the Norwegian military exercise Cold Response in Norway,” the Norwegian Armed Forces said in a statement. “The plane has four crew members and departed on a training mission on Friday 18 March 2022 in Nordland County, Northern Norway.”
The statement said Osprey was en route to Bodø, where it was scheduled to land before 6 a.m. local time, and was reported missing at 6:26 a.m. local time, and its latest known location was south of Bodø.
Search and rescue aircraft were launched but the weather conditions in the area are “challenging and expected to get worse.” The scene of an apparent accident south of Bodo was found in the air three hours later.
A statement from the Norwegian Armed Forces said, “Due to the weather conditions, it was not possible to enter the site from the air.” “Police and rescue teams are now on their way to the area.”
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.