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US ‘working closely’ with gov’t after pilot capture

By JT - Dec 24,2014 - Last updated at Dec 24,2014

AMMAN — The United States said Wednesday that it was working closely with the Jordan government concerning pilot Muath Kasasbeh, who was captured by the Islamic State terrorist group in Raqqa, Syria, earlier in the day. 

“Our hearts and prayers go out to the pilot, his family, and our partners in the Jordanian Armed Forces,” said the department’s spokesperson, Jen Psaki, in a statement published on its website. 

Meanwhile, a US defence official said Wednesday that Washington
had not been able to confirm whether the jet flying with the US-led coalition against the IS was shot down or suffered a mechanical fault.

The coalition was investigating what caused the F-16 to go down over Syria and was “concerned about the pilot’s well-being”, the official said, after pictures emerged of the officer in the hands of IS, Agence France-Presse reported. 

“It is not clear if the aircraft experienced mechanical failure or was struck by enemy fire,” the US official told AFP in Washington, adding that there was no doubt that Kasasbeh had been captured.

Jordan did not say that the plane crashed, stating that it “went down”.

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