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New Zealand resumes flights to Antarctica

The first flight to Antarctica for six months will depart from New Zealand's South Island city of Christchurch on Thursday.

Following three months of darkness and half a year in isolation, the arrival of spring means the flights can resume to the icy continent.

A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster is being used for the mission.

The plane will deliver fresh fruit and vegetables, mail and new staff to the New Zealand and U.S. Antarctic stations.

Twenty-six New Zealanders have been stationed at Scott Base for the winter to research the formation of sea ice.

(Xinhua News Agency August 20, 2009)