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Air Traffic Controllers to Strike

By Larissa Kyzer

Photo: Isavia, Facebook.

The Icelandic Air Traffic Controller Association (FÍF) has called for a strike after talks around an ongoing dispute over working hours failed to reach an agreement. The work stoppage will take place next week, on Tuesday, August 31. Vísir was first to report.

The action comes in the wake of a stalled meeting between FÍF and Isavia, which handles the operation of Keflavik International Airport and manages air traffic in the Icelandic control area. Representatives for both parties took part in a marathon meeting on Monday from 1:00 – 11:30 pm. Unfortunately, no agreement was reached.

FÍF chairman Arnar Hjálmsson confirmed that the work stoppage will be short and temporary. It will apply for all union members who work for Isavia. Arnar expressed disappointment at having to resort to a strike action but said there was no other option. The overwhelming majority of FÍF members support striking, he said, and the union must accede to their wishes.

Earlier this month, on August 9, FÍF members approved six independent work stoppages as part of their contract dispute. Five of these have been postponed; the window to avoid the final work stoppage closes at 5:00 am on Tuesday morning.

Arnar told reporters that it is now in the hands of the state mediator to call another meeting between the union and Isavia. No further meetings have yet been scheduled.

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