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Portugal easyJet pilots cancel Friday strike, reaffirm holiday action

Pilots based in Portugal for the British low-cost airline easyJet cancelled a strike for Friday, but said they would go ahead with strikes over the Christmas-New Year’s period to demand better work conditions.

“The decision to cancel the first day of the strikes was taken at the last moment because the management called on the pilots to hold talks,” said a spokeswoman for the Civil Aviation Pilots Union (SPAC).

However the 43 easyJet pilots still intend to strike on December 24, 26, 31 and January 1, she added.

The industrial action will see the easyJet pilots stopping work for 24 hours each time, with only a minimum service ensuring daily links to Portugal’s Madeira archipelago, a sunny location in the Atlantic off the African coast which attracts winter tourism.

The pilots complain that easyJet is not respecting Portuguese labour law in terms of vacation leave and maximum working hours.