Albania sends troops and police to end air traffic control strike

By Euronews with AP

Albania’s govt sent troops and police on Wednesday night time to fantastic striking air traffic controllers out of the flight control tower on the nation’s one world airport within the capital, Tirana.

No accidents or arrests had been reported, and it became unclear how flights may presumably moreover resume because the civilian air traffic controllers weren’t modified by participants of the military.

Protection Minister Niko Peleshi posted a video on his Facebook web page showing three military police autos outdoors the tower constructing.

“(The airport) is a strategic object of particular importance for national safety,” Peleshi wrote.

Half of the airport is mature by the military.

Earlier, Prime Minister Edi Rama had threatened perfect action in opposition to strikers, who organised a 24-hour walkout to press for a salary amplify. More than a dozen flights had been canceled at Tirana Worldwide Airport on legend of the strike.

Rama threatened to fireplace air traffic controllers who refused to attain abet to work on Thursday — after the tip of the strike.

He also accused opposition events of backing the walkout “to quit vaccine deliveries” to the nation. The nation is in an electoral campaign earlier than April 25 parliamentary polls.

The strikers’ union says their pay has been slash by 62% over the previous yr in consequence of the affect of the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the similar duration, Albania’s air traffic has fallen by 57%, per Infrastructure Minister Belinda Balluku.

The minister mentioned air traffic controllers are paid $2,490 a month — five times the nation’s sensible salary of about $500.

“A constructing of excessive safety (significance) cannot cease within the fingers of persons who make now not operate it,” she mentioned earlier than the night time operation. The minister added that a flight had been scheduled to advance later within the night time carrying supplies for the nation’s COVID-19 vaccination force.

Like Rama, Balluku accused the strikers of getting a political agenda.

“No one can acquire the nation hostage,” she mentioned.

One in all the strikers, Andel Trebicka, suggested local Fax Facts TV that he found Balluku’s remarks threatening.

“I do now not know the scheme can I continue to work fancy this,” he mentioned.

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