Potential Tel Aviv Airport Strike Could Affect 28,000 Passengers

Nov 29, 2017

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Employees at Tel Aviv‘s Ben Gurion International Airport (TLV) are planning to strike this weekend, potentially affecting 28,000 passengers on 180 flights. A union representing the Israel Airports Authority (IAA) announced on Tuesday that it plans to strike from Friday evening to Saturday evening to protest a plan by the Interior Ministry to charge the IAA new taxes.

Airport employees are protesting over Interior Minister Arye Deri’s decision to establish a committee that would impose new taxes on the airport. According to The Times of Israel, the committee would be comprised of mayors from local municipalities and would collect taxes from the airport and redistribute them to residents who live close to TLV. Contrary to the decision by Deri, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said in the past that the taxing of the airport would not happen.

Airport workers fear that the implementation of new taxes would threaten the IAA’s economic stability. The IAA has submitted a dispute to the High Court of Justice, but the union says that they plan to strike to show their firm stance on the issue before the court even considers the case.

If the airport employees do indeed strike this weekend between the evening of December 1 and the evening of December 2, only a small portion of staff will remain at the airport to deal with emergencies. Other than emergency situations, normal operations to, from or through TLV will cease during the strike.

Some airlines are sending out warnings to passengers with travel booked to TLV during the proposed strike. As of Wednesday morning, Delta doesn’t have any updates for passengers with travel planned through TLV.

At this point, whether or not the strike happens is still in the air. The IAA could still ask for a restraining order, which could prohibit the strike from happening, however, the IAA said it still hasn’t made a decision on if it will go that route.

If you have travel booked to, from or through TLV between Friday and Saturday and the strike is still set to take place, be sure to check with your airline before heading to the airport to rebook your travel. We will continue to follow this story — check back for updates.

Featured image by Andrew Burton / Getty Images.

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