New strikes affect British railways and air transport in Europe
Faced with the rising cost of living, not only in the UK but across Europe, discontent is growing among the population and the threat of a summer of strikes across the continent.
Cabin crew for Irish low-cost airline Ryanair from five countries (Spain, Italy, France, Portugal and Belgium) coordinated a strike this weekend to protest their working conditions.
In Belgium, only 41% of Ryanair’s scheduled flights took off from Charleroi airport near Brussels on Saturday, and the airline was forced to cancel 127 flights between Friday and Saturday, an airport spokeswoman told AFP.
The situation in Belgium was complicated by a three-day strike by the staff of the Brussels Airlines airline that ended on Saturday and forced the cancellation since Thursday of 60% of the flights (out of a total of about 300) of the company that belongs to the German Lufthansa.
In Spain, Ryanair staff went on their second day of strike, with delays but no flight cancellations.
One of the unions that called the strike said in the morning that “there have been 15 delayed flights, both arrivals and departures.”
“This situation is expected to increase throughout the day and tomorrow, since Ryanair’s maximum benefit system, of leaving the minimum indispensable time between flights and flights, will cause chain delays,” he added.
The UK rail system was virtually paralyzed on Saturday and flights in Europe were disrupted, especially in Belgium, by strikes in the transport sector.
Tens of thousands of British rail workers went on strike again for a third day this week to demand wage hikes to tackle inflation, which is at record levels in the country.