WATCH Aleppo intl airport receives FIRST flight ending years-long shutdown after Syrian troops clear recovering metropolis of militants

WATCH Aleppo intl airport receives FIRST flight ending years-long shutdown after Syrian troops clear recovering city of militants

A Syrian Air flight has landed at Aleppo Worldwide Airport for the primary time in years, marking a milestone within the restoration of town, which has been returning to regular life from the abyss of its civil struggle.

The business flight, carrying Syrian officers and journalists, landed in Aleppo on Wednesday, some 40 minutes after taking off from the capital, Damascus. The arrival of the Airbus A320 has grow to be a symbolic message, marking the resumption of flights between Syria’s two largest cities.

Footage taken on the spot confirmed a crowd of those that got here to the airport to welcome the primary flight. Some cheered and waved Syrian nationwide flags, others held placards with portraits of President Bashar Assad.

Transport Minister Ali Hammoud had earlier introduced that Aleppo Worldwide Airport would quickly be receiving each home and worldwide flights, with one from Cairo, Egypt, scheduled for the approaching days. The airport resumed its operations simply days after the Syrian Military recaptured some villages within the Aleppo countryside from militants, eliminating a possible risk to civilian flights.

On Sunday, the Syrian SANA information company reported that the military had liberated a complete of 23 villages from the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group (previously referred to as Jabhat al-Nusra – an Al Qaeda offshoot in Syria), placing an finish to the common mortar shelling of town by the jihadists.

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Across the identical time, the military additionally seized management over the strategic M5 freeway linking Aleppo to the Syrian capital, which is now being repaired and is predicted to reopen quickly.

The reopening of the airport marks an vital milestone within the metropolis’s gradual restoration, some three years after it was liberated from jihadists. Varied anti-government armed teams invaded Aleppo in 2012, and it remained within the thick of the Syrian Conflict ever since, with half of town occupied by militant factions, together with Al Nusra and different extremists, whereas the remainder remained underneath the Syrian authorities’s management.

Aleppo residents needed to reside by fixed looting, meals and water shortages, and indiscriminate shelling by the militants, all whereas the western media most popular to place all of the blame for the atrocities on the Syrian Military. The town sustained extreme harm within the struggle. In accordance with UNESCO, 10 p.c of Aleppo’s historic buildings have been destroyed, and as a lot as 60 p.c of the Outdated Metropolis, a World Heritage Web site, was severely broken.

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Since Aleppo’s liberation, Russia has been serving to the Syrians to breathe life again into town. Many cultural websites, together with each mosques and Christian church buildings have since been restored. Half 1,000,000 individuals returned to town within the first yr alone, in accordance with the UN refugee company. 

Aleppo has been identified for its vibrant cultural variety and the peaceable coexistence of individuals of many alternative faiths and backgrounds, and this custom is being carried on as town recovers. One such signal is mass Christmas celebrations, which have once more grow to be an annual function. 

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Syrians gather for the lighting of the Christmas tree in Aleppo's Aziziyah neighbourhood on December 21, 2019. ©AFP
Fireworks as an alternative of mortar shells: Syrian Christians flood the streets in non secular unity of Christmas celebrations (PHOTOS)

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