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Strike threatens to close nine Norway airports

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Strike threatens to close nine Norway airports
The strike could come just as school holidays begin. Photo: Cornelius Poppe / NTB scanpix
09:23 CEST+02:00
Nine airports across Norway could be closed for business on Friday if airport employees and Avinor cannot strike a deal.
Over 300 employees of Avinor, the company that runs Norway's 46 state-owned airports, have said that they will walk off the job on Friday at 11am if mediation between employees' unions and the employers' association Spekter are unsuccessful. 
Of those threatening to strike, 234 are members of LO Stat trade union Norsk Tjenestemannslag (NTL), while the remaining 76 are members of the YS union. Both groups are engaged in parallel mediations with Spekter.
If the strike comes to fruition it will close the following airports for all regular traffic: Alta, Bergen, Førde, Haugesund, Honningsvåg, Leknes, Rørvik, Sandnessjøen and Ålesund.
An Avinor spokeswoman Gurli Høeg Ulverud said the work stoppage couldn't come at a worse time. 
“Almost 30,000 passengers will be travelling to and from these airports on Friday alone. Due to school holidays that start on June 17th, Bergen Airport faces one of the busiest weekends of the year,” she said. 
Ulverud added that “we expect delays throughout the Avinor network as a result of this”.
The key issue between the negotiating parties are proposed changes to the employees' pensions programmes. 
Emergency and rescue flights will not be affected by the potential strike. 
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