Strikes and work stoppages on Athens public transport on Tuesday, Wednesday

Staff on Athens public transport and Greek air-traffic controllers have announced a series of work stoppages on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, supporting a 24-hour general strike called by the General Confederation of Employees of Greece (GSEE) on May 17.

As a result, Athens buses will not be running between 11:00-16:00 on Tuesday, while on Wednesday both buses and trolley buses will only operate for 12 hours, between 9:00 in the morning and 21:00 at night.

Similarly, the city’s tram, metro and electric railway lines will only run from 9:00 in the morning until 16:00 in the afternoon on Wednesday, in order to allow strikers to attend rallies in the city centre, while metro trains will stop at Doukissis Plakentias station without continuing on to the airport and the intervening stops.

Trains throughout the country will be at a standstill on Wednesday, including the Proastiakos line serving the Athens airport, due to a 24-hour strike by the railway workers’ union federation.

Air-traffic controllers have announced a four-hour work stoppage on Wednesday, with no flights between 11:00 in the morning and 15:00 in the afternoon. The departure and arrival times of many more scheduled flights before and after the work stoppage will be modified. Those planning to travel by air are advised to contact the airline company they are flying with.

Athens buses will then continue strike action on Thursday, when services will only be running between 9:00 and 21:00 on that day.

In announcements regarding their decision to strike, transport-sector staff unions said the agreement reached by the government with Greece’s lenders calls for a new tax hikes that will reduce incomes, further cuts to pensions, destruction of the welfare state and the selling-off of public assets, including urban transport companies, to private-sector firms hiring staff with flexible labour terms and low job security.