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Flights canceled at London City Airport after discovery of unexploded WWII bomb

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 12: A Royal Navy bomb disposal team investigate George V Dock after an unexploded 500kg World War Two bomb was found in the River Thames on February 12, 2018 in London, England. The bomb was discovered on Sunday during scheduled work and a 214-metre exclusion zone was established whilst it was removed, forcing London City Airport to cancel all flights. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

LONDON (AP) — All flights in and out of London City Airport were canceled Monday after a 1,100-pound unexploded World War II-era bomb was found nearby in the River Thames.

The Metropolitan Police service cleared an area within 700 feet of the bomb, including several residential streets, as officers worked with specialists from the Royal Navy to remove the device.

Police said the bomb was discovered Sunday at the George V Dock during pre-planned work at City Airport. They described it as a 5-foot shell that was lying in a bed of dense silt.

“The first stage of the removal operation is to free the shell from the silt so that it can be floated for removal,” police said in a statement.

Local officials offered emergency accommodations to residents and said work to remove the bomb would continue into Tuesday.

Airport CEO Robert Sinclair said he recognizes that passengers will be inconvenienced but said the airport is cooperating fully with authorities “to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.”

London City, the smallest of London’s international airports, handled 4.5 million passengers last year. Popular with business travelers, it’s located in east London’s docklands, an area that was heavily bombed during World War II.

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