19-May-2010 12:49 PM

Middle East Airlines warns against second pilot strike

Middle East Airlines (MEA) warned it will take action if pilots held a second strike, after the first 24-hour strike on 29-Apr-2010 cost the airline USD800,000 from the cancellation of 23 international services across the Middle East and Europe, affecting 5,000 passengers (The Daily Star, 19-May-2010). MEA Chairman Mohammad Hout announced negotiations with the pilots to avert strike action. Following the first strike, Mr Hout stated the airline did not agree with its pilots demand for increased benefits. The pilots are calling for an increase in the minimum wage for a beginner pilot from USD3,100 to USD4,000, an increase in retirement age from 60 to 64 and the continuation of social and medical benefits after retirement. The carrier employs 167 pilots. The proposed date of the second strike was not disclosed.

Ministry of Public Works and Transport:I won’t allow MEA to suspend operations even for one second. I think the pilots know what I am talking about. I am very serious,” Ghazi Aridi. Minister for Public Works and Transport. Source: The Daily Star, 19-May-2010.

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