Strike suspended, but more LOT flights cancelled
PR dla Zagranicy
Poland's national airline LOT said it was cancelling seven flights to and from Poland on Saturday due to disruptions caused by an employee strike and staff being on sick leave.
Poland's OPZZ trade union leader Jan Guz (second from left) and the pilots' union leader at LOT, Adam Rzeszot (second from right), during a rally in Warsaw on Saturday. Photo: PAP/Paweł Supernak
The cancellations were expected to affect passengers flying to Warsaw from Tokyo and Seoul, among other destinations. Also affected were travellers flying from Warsaw to Newark, New Jersey, Poland’s PAP news agency reported, citing a spokesman for LOT, Konrad Majszyk.
Meanwhile, striking employees early on Saturday decided to suspend their nine-day-long protest over pay and working conditions following seven hours of talks with management.
As a result of the talks, LOT managers, who previously branded the strike as "illegal," agreed to reinstate two union leaders—Monika Żelazik, the head of a union representing cabin crew at the airline, and Adam Rzeszot, the leader of the pilots' union—and 66 other staff who had been fired over their participation in the protest, public broadcaster Polish Radio’s IAR news agency reported.
Several dozen people on Saturday took part in a rally called by the OPZZ trade union organisation outside the airline’s Warsaw headquarters to show solidarity with protesting LOT employees.
Talks between LOT unionists and the airline's management were expected to resume on Monday morning, with the strike officially suspended until 2 pm that day.
LOT on Friday cancelled 16 flights to and from Poland as the strike by cabin crew and pilots entered its ninth day.
The state-run airline on Thursday cancelled 10 flights due to a lack of crews amid a strike, according to a spokesman.
Twelve flights to and from Poland were cancelled on Wednesday.
The Polish air carrier last month started selling tickets for its new direct service between Warsaw and Miami that is due to launch in June next year.
LOT said last year it aimed to transport up to 10 million passengers in 2018, up from 6.8 million in 2017.