In a statement released on Saturday, the U.S. European Command (EUCOM) confirmed that a U.S. military aircraft crashed in the eastern Mediterranean during a training exercise on the evening of November 10.
The EUCOM did not disclose details about the type of aircraft, the number of people on board, or casualties, citing respect for the affected families.
“Out of respect for the families affected, we will not release further information on the personnel involved at this time,” the command said.
European Command did not provide further details about where in the region the plane went down, whether over land or water.
However, the U.S. issued a flight notice early Saturday noting a “search-and-rescue operation in progress” in the span of sea between Cyprus and Lebanon.
Flight tracker @EISNspotter posted Saturday on X, formerly known as Twitter, that air traffic control in Cyprus had called in military support around midnight Saturday for a helicopter that went down about 30 nautical miles from the island’s southern coast.
Planespotters on social media flagged multiple Navy P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance planes patrolling the water south of Cyprus on Saturday, as well as an Air Force C-17 Globemaster III airlifter — used in aeromedical evacuations — departing the area.
The crash occurred in the midst of heightened tensions in the region, with the United States deploying a carrier strike group to prevent the Israel-Hamas conflict from escalating further.
The Pentagon has recently increased its military presence in the Middle East due to the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas.
This includes the deployment of two Navy carrier strike groups in the eastern Mediterranean and various surveillance aircraft in the region.
As the situation develops, the U.S. military remains actively involved in the region, providing support to allies and conducting operations to address the evolving geopolitical landscape.