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Three dead after US marine helicopter crash in Australia

Three US marines have died and five have been seriously injured after a military helicopter crashed in Australia.

The v-22 Osprey aircraft was carrying 23 US marines off the coast of Darwin during a training exercise when it came down on Melville Island at around 9.30am on Sunday, according to the Australian military.

A statement by the Darwin Marine Rotational Force said the cause of the crash is under investigation and that recovery efforts were ongoing.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese called the crash “tragic”, telling reporters: “Obviously this is a regrettable incident. I am unable to give further information.

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“The Australian Defence Force are cooperating with our friends in the United States defence force to make sure that we provide every assistance possible.”

The incident happened during the Exercise Predator’s Run 2023 – a military exercise featuring troops from Australia, the US, Malaysia and the Philippines.

It comes a month after four Australian soldiers were killed during bilateral exercises when their helicopter crashed into the ocean off the coast of Queensland.

The US and Australia have been increasing their military cooperation in the Pacific Ocean in recent years, triggered by a increasingly assertive China.

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