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Syria airport hit by Israeli airstrike to reopen on June 23: Ministry

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Damascus airport is due to reopen on Thursday, almost two weeks after Israeli strikes rendered its runways unusable, the Syrian transport ministry said.

The Syrian authorities had to suspend flights and undertake major repairs after Israeli airstrikes on June 10 had damaged the runways, the control tower, reception rooms and hangars.

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“Damascus International Airport is back in service as of tomorrow,” the Syrian transport ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

Besides the extensive damage caused to civilian and military runways, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said the strikes had targeted nearby warehouses used as weapons depots by Iran and the Lebanese Hezbollah.

Since civil war broke out in Syria in 2011, Israel has carried out hundreds of air strikes against its northern neighbor.

The raids have targeted Syrian government troops as well as allied Iran-backed forces and fighters from Hezbollah.

The Syrian war started with the brutal repression of peaceful protests and escalated to pull in foreign powers and extremists.

Russia’s military intervention in 2015 helped turn the war in favor of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad.

The conflict has claimed the lives of nearly half a million people and forced around half of the country’s pre-war population from their homes.

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