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NEWYORK -- A bankruptcy judge has approved the 11-billion dollar merger of American Airlines and U.S. Airways.

The approval clears the way for the two carriers to form the world's largest airline.

All aspects of the merger were approved with the exception of American Airlines CEO Tom Horton's severance package. The judge made it clear he did not approve or disapprove of Horton's severance, but rather felt the issue should be deal with as part of the reorganization plan by the new board of directors.

Horton's $20 million severance will be considered at a later date.

The merger still needs approval from government regulators from the Department of Justice before they can move forward. The companies hope to close the merger in September.

NBC Charlotte will keep following all the developments, and bring them to you both on air and on WCNC.com.

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