Damascus International Airport

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Damascus International Airport

مطار دمشق الدولي

Maṭār Dimašq al-Duwaliyy
Damascus International Airport (banner)-2.svg
Damascus - International (DAM - OSDI) AN2190526.jpg
Summary
Airport typeJoint
(civil and military air base)
OwnerGovernment of Syria
OperatorDirectorate General of Civil Aviation
ServesDamascus, Syria
Opened1973; 49 years ago (1973)[1]
Hub for
Time zoneEET (UTC+02:00 / UTC+03:00)
Elevation AMSL2,020 ft / 616 m
Coordinates33°24′41″N 36°30′56″E / 33.41139°N 36.51556°E / 33.41139; 36.51556Coordinates: 33°24′41″N 36°30′56″E / 33.41139°N 36.51556°E / 33.41139; 36.51556
Websitewww.damascus-airport.com
Map
DAM is located in Syria
DAM
DAM
DAM is located in Asia
DAM
DAM
Runways
Direction Length Surface
ft m
05R/23L 11,811 3,600 Asphalt
05L/23R 11,804 3,598 Asphalt
Statistics (2010)
Passengers5,500,000 (Increase50.1%)

Damascus International Airport (Arabic: مَطَار دِمَشْق الدَّوْلِيّ, romanizedMaṭār Dimašq ad-Duwaliyy) (IATA: DAM, ICAO: OSDI) is the international airport of Damascus, the capital of Syria. Inaugurated in the mid-1970s, it also was the country's busiest airport. In 2010, an estimated 5.5 million passengers used the airport, an increase of more than 50% since 2004.[2]

History[edit]

Aerial view of DAM
Airport tower in 2007

The construction of the airport was entrusted in 1965 to a group of French companies (SCB, CSF, Spie and Cegelec), led by the SCB.[3]

In the late 1980s, the Damascus airport had robust air service. Over 30 airlines were operating to the city, offering nonstop flights to various destinations in Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia. Pakistan International Airlines even connected Damascus twice a week with New York JFK via Frankfurt, with three-class B747-300 aircraft.[4]

In March 2007, Iran Air inaugurated a direct connection between Damascus and South America. For a brief period, the airline flew to Caracas using Boeing 747s before its partner Conviasa began plying the route instead.[5][6][7] Flights initially originated in Tehran.[8] By early 2011, Conviasa had added a stop in Madrid to the flight.[9] Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez commented in 2012 that Damascus remained one of Conviasa's destinations, although he did not mention whether the service still operated via Madrid.[10]

Since the onset of the Syrian Civil War, the airport and the road leading to it have been closed intermittently and most international airlines have ceased flights. Several airlines such as Emirates and EgyptAir with former regular service to Damascus have cancelled their flights to Damascus. British Midland International and British Airways stopped flying to Damascus in May 2012 as well, while Royal Jordanian stopped in July 2012. In November and December 2012, intense fighting was reported around the airport, prompting a two-day closure.[11]

On 20 May 2022, as part of ongoing Israeli attacks on Syria, Israel launched a missile attack on a Syrian military position close to the airport, killing three Syrian soldiers. Several Israeli missiles were also reportedly shot down by Syrian air defence systems. Some flights were also canceled as a result of the attack.[12][13]

On 11 June 2022, Damascus international airport suffered major damage, including to runways, following an Israeli missile attack.[14]

Facilities[edit]

Duty-free shops in 2007

Located 30 km southeast of Damascus, the facility is connected to the city by a highway. A shuttle bus runs between the city center and the airport.

The airport is of Islamic architecture, and has two terminals, one for international flights and the other for domestic flights. The airport features two duty-free outlets. The departures hall also includes an in-house coffee shop, several souvenir shops, three restaurants, and a lounge for first and business class passengers.[15]

The southern part of the airport has hardened aircraft shelters and artillery revetments.[16]

The construction of a third terminal is planned but its construction has been postponed due to the events of the civil war, this should increase the capacity of the airport to 16 million passengers per year.

The building of a railway line and a terminal bus station with a shopping center at the airport is planned to connect it to the Hejaz station.

Airlines and destinations[edit]

AirlinesDestinations
Badr Airlines[17] Khartoum
Cham Wings Airlines[18] Abu Dhabi, Aleppo, Baghdad, Basra, Beirut, Benghazi, Erbil, Karachi, Khartoum, Kuwait, Moscow–Sheremetyevo, Muscat, Najaf, Qamishli, Sharjah, Tehran–Imam Khomeini, Yerevan
Fly Baghdad[19] Baghdad, Basra, Erbil, Najaf
Iran Air Shiraz, Yazd
Mahan Air Tehran–Imam Khomeini
Pakistan International Airlines Karachi
Syrian Air[20] Abu Dhabi, Baghdad, Beirut, Cairo, Doha, Dubai–International, Khartoum, Kuwait, Moscow–Vnukovo, Najaf, Qamishli, Sharjah
UR Airlines[21] Baghdad, Najaf

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On 20 August 1975, ČSA Flight 540 crashed while on approach to Damascus International Airport. Out of the 128 passengers and crew on board, there were only two survivors.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "New Damascus International Airport". centreforaviation.com. Retrieved 17 June 2022.
  2. ^ "The Report: Syria 2010" Archived 29 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine,
  3. ^ AFP (1 April 1965). "Un groupe de firmes françaises va construire l'aéroport international de Damas" (in French). Le Monde. Retrieved 8 July 2019.
  4. ^ "Airlines and Aircraft Serving Damascus Effective January 15, 1989". Official Airline Guide: Worldwide Edition. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  5. ^ Romero, Simon (3 March 2007). "Venezuela and Iran Strengthen Ties With Caracas-to-Tehran Flight". The New York Times. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  6. ^ "Iran: National airline to fly to Venezuela". Tampa Bay Times. 11 February 2007. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  7. ^ Primera, Maye (23 November 2009). "Caracas-Damasco-Teherán, un vuelo de lo más misterioso". El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  8. ^ McConnell, Dugald; Todd, Brian (21 August 2010). "Venezuela defends controversial flights to Iran and Syria". CNN. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  9. ^ "Venezuela se esforzará en 2011 por incrementar el turismo "receptivo"". Semana (in Spanish). EFE. 19 January 2011. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  10. ^ "Venezuela invierte más de 811 millones de euros en la compra de aviones". Notimérica. Europa Press. 23 January 2012. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  11. ^ "Damascus under siege". Salon. 11 December 2012.
  12. ^ "Syria says 3 soldiers killed in Israeli missile strikes near Damascus". Times of Israel. 21 May 2022.
  13. ^ "Syria says Israel has carried out new attack near Damascus". Washington Post. 21 May 2022.
  14. ^ "'Heavy' damage to Damascus airport confirmed after Israeli attack". www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 12 June 2022.
  15. ^ Natalia Atfee (November 2005). "Les grands projets urbains de Damas". Archive ouverte HAL (in French). Retrieved 9 July 2019.
  16. ^ "Strike at Damascus Airport: Israel Shows How it's Done".
  17. ^ "Global destinations". badrairlines.com.
  18. ^ chamwings.com - Our destinations retrieved 27 January 2021
  19. ^ flybaghdad.net retrieved 27 January 2021
  20. ^ syrianair.com retrieved 27 January 2021
  21. ^ "UR Airlines destinations". flightradar24.com. FlightRadar24. Retrieved 2 August 2021.

External links[edit]

Media related to Damascus International Airport at Wikimedia Commons