Fog, air pollution, close Macedonia's main airport

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — Poor visibility caused by a combination of heavy fog and air pollution has forced authorities to close Macedonia's main airport, canceling about 30 flights so far.

Officials said Thursday flights heading for Alexander the Great Airport, near the capital Skopje, are being redirected to Ohrid Airport in southwestern Macedonia, the Bulgarian capital Sofia or the Serbian capital Belgrade. There is no indication when it will reopen.

For more than a week, Skopje and three other Macedonian cities have been stifled by air pollution caused mainly by traffic and wood- and oil-burning heating systems in freezing temperatures. The government imposed emergency measures Tuesday to protect the population, instructing private companies and state institutions in the four cities to let pregnant woman and employees over the age of 60 stay at home.

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