A United States helicopter has crashed in Japan just hours after it took off to partake in war drills near North Korea.
The US military helicopter has crash landed in the Okinawa Prefecture of Japan
According to a Daily Star UK report, a US helicopter has crash landed in Japan just hours after military aircraft took part in war drills near North Korea.
The CH-53 military helicopter crash landed "off base" near the village of Takamura Takae, in the Okinawa Prefecture of northeast Japan.
There were no fatalities or injuries but passengers on board the helicopter have been taken to hospital, according to the Okinawa Times.
Police and fire crew were dispatched to the crash site to investigate at around 6pm local time (10am UK time).
Dramatic photos show the wreckage of the helicopter engulfed in flames with thick black smoke billowing into the sky.
US troops were sent to the scene, a farm area near Okinawa’s Northern Training Area, to tackle the blaze.
A US military source described the crash as an "emergency landing", local media reported.
General Lawrence Nicholson, III Marine Expeditionary Force commander, has been asked to “identify the cause of the incident and take preventative measures and provide sufficient information regarding the case".
The helicopter is believed to be a CH-53E Super Stallion – the largest and heaviest helicopter in the US military.
The incident comes just hours after the US military flew several aircraft over the Korean peninsula in a brazen show of force.
Japan's air force also sent two aircraft to take part in the drill.
An air division of Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force is thought to operate CH-53E helicopters, which usually carry a four-man crew.
Around 54,000 US military personnel are based in Japan at facilities on Honshu, Kyushu, and Okinawa, according to the US army.
Last night the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force took part in a joint military exercise with allies the US and South Korea over the Sea of Japan.
Six US planes – including a “nuclear sniffer” and two Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers – flew close to the North Korean border.
A US Navy aircraft carrier, the Ronald Reagan, is conducting drills with a Japanese warship in waters around Okinawa southwest of the Korean peninsula, Japan's military said on Wednesday.
The war drills come amid heightened tensions between Pyongyang and Washington over North Korea's nuclear programme.
The military drills come just a day after Donald Trump suggested military action against North Korea may be the only way to resolve the crisis.
On Tuesday the US President summoned his top war generals to the White House War Room amid fears North Korea may test another missile.
In his debut speech at the United Nations, Trump accused North Korea supreme leader Kim Jong-un of being "on a suicide mission".