- Two Nigerian F-7Ni fighter jets crashed on Friday while rehearsing for an air display.
- The three pilots ejected, but one later died “due to complications from injuries sustained upon impact on the ground.”
- Witnesses told Reuters that they saw the wings of the jets collide in the air over the Nigerian capital of Abuja.
One pilot was killed after two Nigerian F-7Ni fighter jets crashed on Friday while rehearsing for an air display, according to the Nigerian Air Force.
“Two Nigerian Air Force (NAF) F-7Ni aircraft taking part in the rehearsals for the aerial display to mark Nigeria’s 58th Independence Anniversary Celebrations were involved in an air incident today,” Air force spokesperson Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola said in a statement.
“The air mishap necessitated the 3 pilots to eject from their aircraft, which subsequently crashed in the general area of Katamkpe Hill,” Daramola said, adding that “one of them later died due to complications from injuries sustained upon impact on the ground.”
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Witnesses reported seeing the wings of the F-7Nis collide in the air over the capital, Abuja, with at least one of the aircraft crashing into a hill in the Mpape district of the city. One witness, Fabian Iduh, said he saw three or four people descend to the ground in parachutes.
F-7Nis are export versions of Chinese J-7s, which Nigeria purchased from Beijing in 2005.
Nigeria is due to celebrate the anniversary of the country’s independence from British colonial rule on Oct. 1.