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Israel Strike Knocks Out Airport in Syria’s Aleppo: State Media

Israeli warplanes struck Aleppo airport before dawn Tuesday, causing significant damage that halted flights to and from Syria’s war- and quake-battered second city, state media said.

The airport has been a major conduit for aid flights since a February 6 earthquake devastated swathes of southeastern Turkey and neighboring Syria, and they too were brought to a stop, a transport ministry official said.

“At exactly 2:07 am (2307 GMT Monday), the Israeli enemy carried out an air attack from the Mediterranean west of Latakia targeting Aleppo international airport,” the SANA state news agency reported, citing a military source.

The damage forced authorities to close the airport to all flights, the news agency added. There was no immediate word on any casualties.

More than 80 aid flights have landed in Aleppo over the past month with relief supplies for quake-hit areas, transport ministry official Suleiman Khalil told AFP.

“It is no longer possible to receive aid flights until the damage has been repaired,” he added.

Since civil war erupted in Syria in 2011, Israel has carried out hundreds of air strikes against its neighbor, primarily targeting positions of the Syrian army and its Iranian and Hezbollah allies.

The Israeli military rarely comments on individual strikes against Syria, but has vowed repeatedly to keep up its air campaign to stop arch-foe Iran consolidating its presence.

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