We don’t think there was any hostile action.
An investigation will likely focus on a potential technical or human error.
A Defense Ministry spokesperson said: “A British F35 pilot from HMS Queen Elizabeth ejected during routine flight operations in the Mediterranean this morning.
“The pilot has been returned safely to the vessel and an investigation has started, so it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time. “
The £ 100million next-generation RAF F35 jet is said to be at sea and has yet to be recovered.
Eight British F35s are on board the aircraft carrier, as well as 10 American F35s. This is variant B of the Lockheed Martin jet, which can take off at close range and land on the aircraft carrier.
HMS Queen Elizabeth returns to the UK after more than seven months at sea for a maiden voyage to the Far East and back.
The incident happened at around 10 a.m. UK time in international waters. No other ships or aircraft were involved.
A full military aerial investigation will be carried out as a matter of urgency.
All other F35 operational and training flights continue.