Beirut airport briefly closed by winter storm, schools shut

 A fierce winter storm lashing the east coast of the Mediterranean forced a brief closure of Beirut airport on Tuesday, the National News Agency reported.

AFP| Updated: Jan 07, 2015, 02:06 AM IST

Beirut: A fierce winter storm lashing the east coast of the Mediterranean forced a brief closure of Beirut airport on Tuesday, the National News Agency reported.

At the same time, the authorities ordered schools throughout the country to close on Wednesday as the storm, named Zina, hit the country.

Air traffic was halted at 7:00 pm (1500 GMT) with Lebanon buffeted by heavy winds, snow and flooding in some places. Flights resumed about an hour later.

The Education Ministry ordered all schools to stay closed on Wednesday but left it up to authorities at the country`s universities to decide whether to open.

Weather conditions have led authorities in neighbouring countries to also take precautionary measures.

In Jordan, ministries and other government offices are to be closed on Wednesday, while official exams this week are being postponed.

With snow expected in Israel and the Palestinian territories, Jordan has sent snowploughs to the West Bank.