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Airports hit by ash cloud disruption reopen

Restrictions on flights to and from airports in Spain, Portugal and Morocco were on Wednesday lifted following days of disruption caused by volcanic ash cloud.

In Spain, all airports resumed normal operations, with Valencia, the last to see restrictions lifted, reopening from 0600 GMT, said the Spanish air traffic control organisation Aena.

A ban on flights was also lifted at all Portuguese airports on Wednesday, said Portugal’s NAV air traffic authority.

“There is no more disruption,” said a statement issued by the authority.

In Morocco, the main airports, in particular Casablanca and Rabat, re-opened on Tuesday evening but had to be closed yet again several hours later with restrictions in place until 0600 GMT on Wednesday.

“On the basis of recent meteorological information, the volcanic ash cloud will leave Moroccan air space over the coming hours,” said the ministry of transport and public works in a statement.

The ash from Iceland’s Eyjafjoell volcano, which began erupting on April 14, last month caused the biggest aerial shutdown in Europe since World War II.

Volcanologists in Iceland said the latest ash cloud problems, which first forced closures of Spanish airports from last Saturday, were caused by ash left over from previous weeks which can travel around in the atmosphere due to winds.