US: Islamic State didn't down Jordanian plane

By Bradley Klapper, Associated Press | Posted - Dec. 24, 2014 at 1:51 p.m.



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WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. says Islamic State militants haven't shot down a Jordanian F-16 warplane as they've claimed.

A military statement says the plane crashed in northern Syria and confirmed that a pilot was taken captive by Islamic State forces.

But evidence indicates the Islamic State "did not down the aircraft as the terrorist organization is claiming." The statement didn't cite a cause for the crash.

In the statement Wednesday, Gen. Lloyd Austin, head of U.S. Central Command, called the Jordanians "highly respected and valued partners."

He says their pilots and crews have performed exceptionally in the U.S.-led bombing campaign.

Austin said the U.S. will support efforts to recover the pilot and won't tolerate attempts by the Islamic State to "misrepresent or exploit this unfortunate aircraft crash for their own purposes."

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Bradley Klapper

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