Brussels Airport Departure Hall Reopens After Terrorist Attacks
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For the first time since suicide bombings in March, the departure hall inside the Brussels Airport was reopened to the public Sunday with increased security.
According to The Associated Press, Brussels Airport had been operating a limited number of flights already, but passengers had been forced to use a temporary check-in tent following the extensive damage to the departure hall as a result of two suicide bombs exploding in the area, killing 16 people.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel was on hand Sunday for a special ceremony officially reopening the repaired departure hall. During the dedication of a plaque bearing the names of victims, Michel told the crowd, “We all choose to resist. Today, our capital's airport is reopening. Brussels is back in business.”
In addition to the repairs needed inside the facility due to the explosions, the airport has also added more security, including more officers stationed before entering the terminal.
While passengers and employees were excited to get back to normal, the emotion was palpable Sunday. Check-in clerk Veronique Goodman told The AP, “For the people who lost their family, injured colleagues ... nobody wants this ever to happen again. But (we're) happy to be back with our colleagues.”
Brussels Airport Company CEO Arnaud Feist also told The AP that the reopening was an important step in the facility’s and city’s recovery from the attacks. Officials hope to have the airport back to 100 percent capacity by mid-June.
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