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Jordanian Pilot Not Downed by ISIL

Release No: UNRELEASED Dec. 24, 2014 PRINT | E-MAIL

December 24, 2014

Release # 20141208
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TAMPA, Fla. - A Jordanian F-16 aircraft crashed in the vicinity of the northern Syrian city of Ar-Raqqah on Wednesday and the pilot has been taken captive by ISIL forces.

Evidence clearly indicates that ISIL did not down the aircraft as the terrorist organization is claiming.

The commander of U.S. Central Command, General Lloyd J. Austin III, who is overseeing all coalition military operations in Iraq and Syria issued a statement, "The Jordanians are highly-respected and valued partners and their pilots and crews have performed exceptionally well over the course of this campaign. We strongly condemn the actions of ISIL which has taken captive the downed pilot. We will support efforts to ensure his safe recovery, and will not tolerate ISIL's attempts to misrepresent or exploit this unfortunate aircraft crash for their own purposes."