Air France Staff Gets Pepper-Sprayed During Strike
French riot police pepper-sprayed Air France staff on Wednesday as the workers' one-day strike over pay escalated at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport.
According to the Associated Press, the clash occurred when the airline's demonstrating staff, who were in front of Air France's headquarters, attempted to storm past police and into the airport's main terminals. About 50 protestors made it into the terminal to march and sound off horns.
Air France estimates that nearly one-third of its staff is striking. Hundreds of staff members waved flares, French flags and posters at Paris' largest airport, the AP reports.
Due to the strike, Air France said only half of the airline's long-haul flights would take off from Paris, and about 75% of its medium-haul flights to and from Charles de Gaulle and 85% of its short-haul flights would operate. The result was thousands of passengers with canceled or disrupted travel plans, according to AP.
The airline said affected passengers could change or postpone their trips at no extra cost, and refunds will be offered if a customer decides not to travel or if a flight is cancelled or delayed for more than five hours.
Several Air France staff unions are participating in the strike in hopes of a 6% pay increase.