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France strike grounds multiple Ryanair flights

Ryanair aeroplanesA strike by air-traffic controllers in France yesterday led to Ryanair cancelling more than 100 flights from UK airports. THE European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol) issued a bulletin saying the Marseille sector of France was the worst affected by the strike.

Ryanair’s flights to and from London Stansted to locations including Marseille, Perpignan, Palma and Barcelona were all affected by the one-day stoppage. The cancellation of so many flights is believed to have impacted as many as 20,000 passengers.

British Airways also had to cancel flights. A report earlier in the day said the national carrier had pulled the plug on 30 round-trip flights. These included ones to Marseille, Nice, Toulouse, Lyon and Barcelona.

BA said passengers whose flights were cancelled could switch to flights departing today or tomorrow at no extra cost. The statement said the carrier planned to use bigger aircraft to accommodate the expected extra passenger load.

easyJet also released an early warning saying the strike would result in delays getting to airports in France. The warning said departing passengers needed to allow additional time to reach their departure airports.

Commenting on the strike, Ryanair marketing head Kenny Jacobs said France needed to sort its act out and take action against air traffic control and other public transport unions. He said the knock-on effect of each strike caused misery for thousands upon thousands of travellers in Europe.

The strikers are all affiliated to L’USAC-CGT Union. L’USAC-CGT ordered the strikes in response to an announced reform of labour laws last last month by the government of President Emmanuel Macron. The union claims the amendments are not beneficial for French workers.

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