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China Southern to begin Urumqi-Ashgabat flights
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China Southern Airlines, the nation's biggest carrier by fleet size, will launch semiweekly flights from northwestern Chinese city Urumqi to Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan, on Dec. 18.


The new flights will be operated by China Southern's Xinjiang subsidiary, with a Boeing 737 aircraft departing Urumqi on Tuesdays and Saturdays and returning on Wednesdays and Sundays.


The move will complete the subsidiary's coverage of the five central Asian nations, which also include Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, China Southern said.


Xinjiang subsidiary currently operates flights to 16 international cities, making Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, a gateway hub for northwest China.


Ren Jidong, general manager of the subsidiary, said that his company hoped to explore the central Asian markets in collaboration with carriers in central and western Asia.


(Xinhua News Agency December 17, 2007)

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