Infrastructure, Transport and Networks Minister Christos Spirtzis has arranged to meet with representatives of striking air-traffic controllers on Saturday afternoon, in a last-ditch effort to avoid the cancellation of hundreds of flights to and from Greek airports over the weekend. The meeting will also be attended by the head of Greece’s Civil Aviation Authority Constantinos Lintzerakos.
In an announcement on Saturday, Lintzerakos criticised the strike called by the Greek Air Traffic Controllers Association (GATCHA) and said it was prompted by “an obsession of the trade union leadership of only one section of air-traffic controllers” to proceed with strike action that he called “unreasonable and unjustifiable.”
“You are fighting a law that fully protects the rights of the workforce and adopts all the European Regulations,” he said, noting that the union’s leadership had been invited to take part in dialogue before the new legislation was passed but had refused to attend. He accused them of proceeding with strikes at the expense of the Greek economy and all flight passengers over the narrow interests of a privileged few.
Lintzerakis also made clear that the government was not “selling-off” control of Greek skies to private interests and had the backing of the majority of CAA staff “barring a small minority terrified at the possible loss of personal privileges.”