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NEWS Last modified on January 23, 2014

Aleppo Airport in war-torn Syria receives first flight for a year

According to online media reports, Aleppo Airport in war-torn Syria was reopened yesterday when the first flight for a year landed.

Reuters news agency, says a passenger flight carrying a media delegation from Damascus landed at 10am in Aleppo, formerly the commercial hub and the most populous city.

It says the flight was able to land after the Syrian government took control of a required area around the airport to make flights in and out safe.

Reuters quotes a reporter for the government outlet, who says the flight was made possible by the army's control of the entire area, which had been achieved over the last week.

The director of the airport in the report, explained how a three-mile area around the airport had to be secured for take-off and landings to take place and added the aircraft did not encounter gunfire or any other hostile action during the 55 minute flight.

Aleppo Airport was closed last year due to clashes and shelling, but military aircraft continued to use it.

Reuters says rebels have held roughly half of Aleppo since mid-2012, but President Bashar al-Assad’s army has reportedly now retaken key areas of the city.

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