French airports to go on strike in February: unions

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French aviation workers' unions said Thursday they would strike between February 6 and 9 to protest a government bill aiming to make it more difficult for the sector to take industrial action.

"All trades are united in this call: pilots, navigators, mechanics and ground staff," Yves Deshayes of the main SNPL pilots' union told AFP.

The French parliament is on January 24 to debate the bill put forward by Eric Diard from President Nicolas Sarkozy's right-wing UMP party to legislate air strikes.

It notably requires each worker to give 48 hours notice if they are to join a strike.

"We all agree on the fundamentals. Tomorrow, it will no longer be possible to strike if this bill is passed," said Fatiha Aggoune-Schneider, who heads the main SNPNC-FO stewards' and hostesses' union.

"Everything we're hearing in recent days... clearly shows that this law is aimed at restricting the right to strike," said Deshayes.

The warning came as French airport security workers were on the seventh-day of an existing strike Thursday, demanding pay increases, although their action has had limited impact on international flights.

© 2011 AFP

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