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US fighter jets drop bombs on Australia's fragile Great Barrier Reef

 According to reports, the two jets were supposed to bomb a nearby range on Townshend Island, but when the mission was suddenly aborted, pilots instead dropped the bombs, two inert and two unarmed, about 16 nautical miles south of Bell Cay in Australia's Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Earlier reports by BBC News explain that the two AV-8B Harriers carrying the bombs were running low on fuel during the exercise, which had been delayed due to hazards and other issues. Since the jets could not be landed safely with the unexploded ordnance still on board, its pilots had to instead release them elsewhere before landing, according to the U.S. Navy. So they picked a stretch of water in the fragile World Heritage Site off the coast of Queensland.

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