Ben-Gurion International Airport employees late Tuesday night called off the surprise work slowdown they began earlier in the afternoon, having won concessions from the airport’s management team.
The slowdown had delayed more than a dozen flights and held up hundreds of passengers two days before the start of peak travel season.
Earlier Tuesday, the Finance Ministry criticized the strike.
“Particularly at this stressful time for the airport, the airport employees are choosing to strike at the expense of Israeli citizens… There is no cause for the strike and it’s totally irresponsible,” it said in a statement. “It damages both the employment and the management.”
The Israeli Airports Authority expects some 1.2 million passengers to pass through the airport in the next month during the Jewish holiday season. An estimated 7,700 flights will land and depart between September 13 and October 11, including some 20,000 Hasidic Jews expected to make pilgrimages to Uman, Ukraine, for next week’s Rosh Hashanah holiday.
The wildcat slowdown was the third worker action in the last three weeks.
A strike was initiated two weeks ago to protest a lack of manpower and temporary layoffs — but the union and management came to an agreement a few hours later, and the Finance Ministry approved the deal.
Three weeks ago, following a dispute between air traffic control tower workers and the airport’s management, Ben-Gurion experienced delays in takeoffs. The situation was resolved after management added extra manpower and updated the workers’ pension funds.