US military resumes Osprey flights in Japan after crash


TOKYO: The US Marines on Monday resumed flights of their controversial Osprey aircraft in Japan, less than a week after a crash off the southern island of Okinawa sparked local protests. Last Tuesday an MV-22 Osprey made what Marines called a “controlled landing” just off the Okinawan coast during a night training flight that left the aircraft in pieces. No one was killed but the accident sparked anger on the island—a strategic outpost of US military power. In response, the Marines suspended flights of the tiltrotor aircraft in Japan pending an investigation. The MV-22 Osprey can carry 24 troops and is half helicopter half turboprop, boasting the maneuverability of a chopper and the speed and range of a fixed-wing aircraft. But a series of deadly accidents, mostly in the United States, has prompted frequent protests in Okinawa against the deployment of the aircraft. The latest crash happened after the aircraft damaged one of its propellers during an aerial refueling drill with another plane, according to the Marines. US Forces Japan commander Lieutenant General Jerry Martinez said “a thorough, careful and exhaustive review” was conducted and explanation given to the Japanese government.



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