Thousands stranded as Indonesian volcano closes airports

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DENPASAR, Indonesia: Ash drifting from an Indonesian volcano closed five airports on Friday, including the one on the holiday island of Bali, causing about 250 flights to be cancelled and stranding thousands of holidaymakers. The international airport on popular Lombok island was also among those closed late Thursday as Mount Raung in East Java province spewed clouds of ash, transport ministry spokesman J.A. Barata said. The closures came during peak holiday season in Bali, a pocket of Hinduism in Muslim-majority Indonesia which attracts millions of foreign tourists every year to its palm-fringed beaches.

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AFP

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