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Dozens of flights cancelled in Europe, leaving passengers stranded

Several flights in Europe were canceled following a strike by Rainier employees demanding a pay rise and a better working environment, which has left hundreds of passengers stranded. Ryanair cabin crew unions in Belgium, Spain and Portugal called a three-day strike.

Staff in France and Italy were expected to walk out over the weekend, while crews in Spain are set to strike again on 30 June and 1-2 July. Workers at various airlines, including British Airways, are also planning a strike this summer.

Rising inflation across Europe has put the lives of millions of workers in crisis, prompting trade unions to demand higher wages. The unions allege that Ryanairdid not respect labour laws, including the minimum wage. They also demand that working conditions be improved. “A crew member is not even allowed to take a bottle of water on a flight,” said Ricardo Penarroias, president of SNPVAC.

Ryanair, meanwhile, claimed that less than 2% of its 3,000 flights were affected by the strike. It noted that there were no flight disruptions in Italy, Spain, Portugal, UK, France or Ireland as the vast majority of Ryanair crews are working normally.

The strike comes as airlines and airport operators across Europe face a shortage of staff to cope with passenger congestion. With the end of the Covid restrictions, passenger traffic is also increasing.

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