Air traffic controllers to strike as talks collapse

The Local France
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Air traffic controllers to strike as talks collapse
Passengers can expect disruption during strike. Photo: AFP

Hopes that a strike by French air traffic controllers could be averted seemed to be dashed on Tuesday as unions said that talks had been broken off. It is likely airlines will have to cancel scores of flights.



Leaders of the main SNCTA union which represents almost 50 percent of air traffic controllers said late on Tuesday that negotiations with the government had been broken off after eight fruitless hours.

"Everyone takes their responsibilities," said Roger Rousseau, national secretary of the SNCTA union, who accused the government of "opting for a stand-off".
Unless there is a dramatic turn around aviation authorities will be forced on Wednesday to ask airlines to cancel scores of flights.
The last time the SNCTA union held a strike in April it resulted in about 40 percent of flights in France being scrapped.
Hopes a strike could be avoided when other unions announced over the weekend that strikes planned for Tuesday and Wednesday this week were called off.
Nevertheless the union SNCTA along with Force Ouvrière, which represent just over 50 percent of air traffic controllers, confirmed their intention to strike on Thursday and Friday, which coincides with the start of the French holiday season.
The industrial action is motivated by a desire to improve salaries and working conditions and unions complain about a rise in air traffic but a drop in the number of controllers.
We'll have more updates on the planned industrial action throughout the week.


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