Flights canceled in Portugal due to Iceland ash cloud

11:39, April 17, 2010      

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At least 185 flights were canceled in Portugal on Friday due to a volcanic eruption in Iceland which produced an ash cloud over Europe, the country's airports office said.

Portela airport in the capital had the most cancellations, affecting 77 flights, including 40 departures and 37 arrivals, the office said in a statement.

The flights were canceled because of the closure of some European airports, mainly in Central and Northern Europe as well as in the United Kingdom, the statement said.

In the airport of Faro, Algarve, south of the country, 69 flights were canceled.

Meanwhile, the office suggested passengers contact their airlines to inform themselves of their flight schedules before going to the airport.

While Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva is stranded in Prague due to the air traffic chaos, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is on her way back to Germany from the United States, will have to stay in Lisbon till Saturday.

Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates has held a "courtesy" meeting with Merkel at Portela airport.

Source: Xinhua


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