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US pilot killed in Middle East F-16 crash

A US Air Force pilot was killed on 1 December when a Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon crashed in what US Central Command (CENTCOM) is calling a non-combat related incident.

The crash occurred around 23:00 US Eastern Time while returning to an unnamed base in Middle East, according to a CENTCOM news release. The crash did not occur in Iraq or Syria, where the air force and navy are launching daily strikes against militants fighting with the Islamic State terrorist group.

The pilot on 2 December was identified as Capt William H. Dubois, 30, of New Castle, Colorado. died Dec. 1. The F-16 crashed near an unnamed coalition air base in the Middle East. He was assigned to the 77th Fighter Squadron, Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina.

US forces are stationed in various Middle Eastern countries, including Qatar, where US Central Command is headquartered, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. The navy's 5th Fleet is based in Bahrain and has been launching airstrikes against ISIS from aircraft carriers stationed offshore.

The accident’s cause is under investigation. Additional details will be released as they become available.

[UPDATE: Article updated to include the identity of the deceased pilot.]

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