Croatia fighter jet crashes, pilot ejects

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Associated Press

Posted on August 5, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 5 at 1:02 PM

ZAGREB, Croatia (AP) — Croatia's defense ministry says a military fighter jet has crashed near the capital and its pilot has ejected.

The MIG-21 is believed to have taken part in a flyover Tuesday during the formal celebrations marking the 19th anniversary of Croatia's offensive that liberated its Serb-held territories during the war for independence.

The fighter crashed about 20 kilometers (12 miles) south of Zagreb with some of its parts landing in populated areas. The defense ministry says the pilot has been taken to a hospital for checkups.

The ministry says that according to initial information the jet's landing gear caught fire.

Most of Croatia's aging 12 MIGs have recently undergone an overhaul in Ukraine, but the one that crashed Tuesday wasn't among them.

Croatia has been a NATO member since 2009.

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