Australia has suspended a major military exercise with the United States after a military helicopter crashed in the Pacific Ocean.
According to the news agency AFP, four crew members are missing as a result of the destruction of a defence helicopter in the Pacific Ocean.
Australian Defence Minister Richard Marles said the MRH 90 Taiping crashed near Hamilton Island on Friday night. The missing crew members are Australian citizens.
30,000 soldiers from Australia, the United States, and many other countries are taking part in the Talisman Sabre military exercises.
The Australian Defence Minister said that four crew members are missing. The search operation has been going on since Friday night and will continue on Saturday as well.
Defence Minister Richard Marles says the families of the missing have been notified.
Officials have not yet said what caused the helicopter to crash.
The Talisman Sabre military exercises are entering their second week. These include large-scale logistics, ground warfare, naval landings, and air operations exercises. Japan, France, Germany, and South Korea are also involved in the exercises.
US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin and Foreign Minister Anthony Blanken are also in Australia. Both have offered US support for the rescue operation.
It is not yet clear whether the military exercises that ended on August 4 will resume.
Before the crash, Canberra had announced it would replace its fleet of ageing Taiping helicopters with US-made Blackhawks.
Australian officials have complained of frequent groundings, maintenance problems, and spare parts problems with the European-made Taipan.
In March, an MRH 90 Taipan suffered engine failure during a nighttime training exercise south of Sydney. Which was throw into the sea.
Crew members suffered minor injuries, but the Taiping fleet was subsequently ground for a month.