U.S. service members were missing Saturday after their aircraft crashed off the east coast of Australia, the United States Marine Corps said.

It is unclear how many service members were aboard the Osprey heli-plane at the time of the crash.

Image: MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraftsImage: MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircrafts

FILE IMAGE: MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircrafts stand ready on the flight deck of the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard.MC2 Adam D. Wainwright / U.S. Navy

Vessels and aircraft from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit and the Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group are taking part in the rescue operation.

The aircraft was described as a MV-22 and is part of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Australian Defense Minister Marise Payne said Australian defense force personnel were on board the aircraft.

She added that Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had been briefed on the situation and had spoken with U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

No further details were immediately available.

This is a breaking story, please check back in for updates.

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