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Beirut Airport / BEYWhere? Beirut, Lebanon
When? August 2007

Not the usual trip report, but a most interesting visit for me during August this year. While being on holiday in Lebanon I had the rare opportunity to visit Beirut Rafic Hariri International Airport to report about the civil operations there.
© Text & Photos: Dr. Andreas Zeitler – Permission to publish excerpts is strictly required!

"We operate in a very extraordinary manner here, because we live in a very critical and unstable situation", with these words Dr. Hamdi Chaouk, Director General of Civil Aviation at Beirut's Rafic Hariri International Airport , described the daily business at the airport.

Whereas airline passengers can usually enjoy the view of the beautiful Mediterranean coastline, passing the capital's beach promenade "La Corniche" with the famous pigeon rock "Raouché", Beirut's most famous landmark, during the approach, this lets forget to easily that 'Cedar country' is still far from being secure and in a very difficult political position.

Middle East Airlines

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Beirut's Home Carrier

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bomed cinema in Beirut downtownAfter the hard years of the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990) a growth in passenger numbers from 300.000 to about 3.5 million per year was achieved at the airport, when important infrastructure at the airport was again destroyed by Israeli attacks on July 13th, 2006. During the build-up the airport was closed for around a month until the flights were resumed. At that time the everyday challenges the airport had to face with its political and economic environment naturally did not cease to exist. Conflicts in the north of the country for example were still going on, but a recovery and the continuation of the boom was expected by the airport management, strongly supported by the new Lebanese Aviation Regulations (LAR), that were introduced in 2002.

regular International Flights

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photos on www.airfighters.com