TOKYO - The pilot of a US fighter jet that crashed in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of northeastern Japan on Sunday has been rescued, Japan's Coast Guard said, six hours after the aircraft went down.

The pilot, whose name was not disclosed, was placed safely on a US container ship in the region around 6 p.m. (0900 GMT), according to the coast guard, one of several agencies that sent vessels to assist in the rescue.

The F-16 Fighter Falcon went down some 200 miles northeast of Hokkaido, Japan's northernmost island, according to an earlier statement by the US Air Force.

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