Nigeria's Abuja international airport closed

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ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) - Nigeria's Aviation Ministry says the international airport at the country's capital, Abuja, is closed with the runway blocked by a Saudi cargo plane.

Hundreds of passengers are stranded. Domestic airlines Arik Air and Aero Contractors cancelled all Thursday flights to and from Abuja. The British Airways Web site shows a flight due to fly to London at 9 a.m. Thursday has been rescheduled for Friday morning.

Aviation Ministry spokesman Joe Obi said a Boeing 747 cargo plane veered off at the maneuvering area of the runway and into a maintenance area after landing Wednesday night at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.

Obi said in a statement Thursday that concerted efforts are being intensified to remove the obstructing aircraft so that flights can resume.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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