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Italy's Mount Etna erupts and lights up the sky in Sicily, on July 27, 2019. The volcano, Europe's most active, began erupting on May 21, sending ash falling on nearby communities.ANTONIO PARRINELLO/Reuters

Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano, was erupting on Sunday, spewing ash on Catania, eastern Sicily’s largest city, and forcing a shutdown of that city’s airport.

Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology, or INGV, which closely monitors Etna with instrumentation on the slopes, noted that cloud cover on a rainy day was impeding views of the eruption, which often serves up a spectacular display of flaming lava during the volcano’s not infrequent eruptions.

The institute said that ash had fallen on Catania and at least one town on Mount Etna’s inhabited slopes. No injures were reported.

Italy state television, reporting from Catania, said the city’s airport would be closed at least until Sunday evening.

INGV indicated that monitoring had recorded evidence of a stepping up in tremor activity in recent days.

People in the towns of Adrano and Biancavilla reported hearing loud booms emanating from the volcano on Sunday, the Italian news agency ANSA said.

In early 2021, an eruption of the volcano lasted several weeks.