Staff Protests Force Turkish Airlines to Cancel Flights

Turkish Airlines canceled 104 flights on Tuesday due to a protest from its staff and cyber attack that hit the air carrier’s website. Turkish Airlines employees massively called in sick today as a form of protest against a draft law that would make aviation strikes illegal.

The subsequent cyber attack and the total number of flights cancelled were confirmed by Turkish transport minister Binali Yildirim . He also explained that if Turkish Airlines wouldn’t sort out the matter soon enough, he would personally take the needed measures to solve the flight problems.

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As Turkish Airlines staff can only go on strike after a statutory process, the action employees resorted to, calling in sick, was not an official protest, said the head of aviation union Hava-Is.

“Many of them have become sick and do not feel ready to fly. In terms of flight safety, they are unable to perform their duties,” Hava-Is general secretary Mustafa Yagci told Reuters.

The airline’s spokesman Ali Genc issued a Twitter statement blaming the Have-Is Union for the employee protest:

“The Hava-Is Union has made an illegal call for a strike and some workers have responded to this call. Because of this we are experiencing problems to flight operations”.

Union representatives said they were still having a dispute over payments for 2011 with Turkish Airlines and also warned that, depending on the outcome of the draft law, they might go in full strike within a month.





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