Cabin crew strike grounds Portuguese airline flights
Portuguese state-owned airline TAP cancelled nearly half of its 320 scheduled flights Thursday as its cabin crew held a 24-hour strike over deteriorating working conditions.
Only flights by its regional subsidiary carrier Portugalia were maintained as well as minimum services to the Azores and Madeira, two Portuguese archipelagos in the Atlantic, and Sao Paulo, the financial capital of Brazil, an airline spokeswoman said.
Of the 25,000 passengers who were scheduled to fly on TAP flights on Thursday, nearly 15,000 had either cancelled their trip or changed the flights ahead of the strike, she added.
Cabin crew union SNPVAC complained that contracts are being violated, leading to "a continuous and systematic degradation of work conditions" at the airline which the government plans to sell.
Over 90 percent of TAP cabin crew workers had heeded the strike call, according to the head of the union, Nuno Fonseca.
TAP cabin crew plan to stage three more 24-hour strikes over the same issue -- on Saturday, November 30 and December 2.
© 2014 AFP