A rescue operation in the Russian Far East found the body of one pilot and rescued another after two fighter jets collided over the Sea of Japan during a training flight on Friday, Russian media reported.
Russian news agencies quoted the ministry as saying that the body of one pilot was found “without any sign of life.”
The Russian Su-34 bombers touched in mid-air and fell into the sea near the Strait of Tartary, which separates Russia’s Sakhalin island from the mainland, according to the country’s Investigative Committee.
The accident took place during a scheduled training exercise 35 kilometres (22 miles) from the shore in Russia’s Far East.
Citing defence Ministry’s sources, Russian media report that the pilots were able to eject from their jets, and one of them was evacuated by air to the city of Khabarovsk.
The number of missing pilots has not been confirmed, even as TV Station Zvezda claims an ongoing rescue operation continued in severe weather conditions on Friday involving six ships, three helicopters and three planes.
The country’s investigative committee said it had opened a criminal investigation into the case.