“We recovered the wreckage and determined it was from the F-35,” a Japanese Air Self Defense Force (JASDF) spokesperson said as reported by Reuters.
The said single-seat, single-engine, all-weather stealth multirole F-35A fighter, on training mission, was reported to be missing April 9 at around 7:27 pm in the Pacific Ocean 135km (84 miles) east of Misawa.
“First we are trying our best to carry out search and rescue operations,” Japan Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya told reporters on Tuesday as quoted by Agence France-Presse. “And then we will do our best to probe the cause.”
Iwaya added that remaining units of F-35A in JASDF service, activated March 29, will be grounded as investigation proceeds.