As we announced in this space yesterday, Iberia workers are set to go on strike in the weeks to come in protest of massive cutbacks brought on by the Iberia-British Airways merger. Yesterday, the first day of the strike, resulted in major disruptions.
British go home
At Barajas, Madrid's international airport, the Spanish airline's employees protested in one of the terminals. Emotions ran high: police officers had to force the protesters to leave the airport. It was confirmed by the local police that five people were arrested.
The protests were mainly targeted at British Airways, Iberia's partner in airline group IAG. The Spanish workers are blaming British managers for the massive redundancies and pay cuts that the airlines' merger will lead to. In Terminal 4, angry slogans like ‘British go home!’ were written on information panels and banners carried by the protesters.
Many cancellations and delays
Iberia's unions announced that nearly 98% of ground staff participated in the strike. 80 flights were cancelled on Monday as a result of the strike. The effects will be even more dramatic on Tuesday, when 200 flights are already set to stay grounded. Passengers of other carriers are also bound to feel the impact of the strike, as baggage handling staff will also temporarily refuse to work.
Written by: Flight-Delayed