EL AL DISPUTE: If Pilots Quit, All Flights Will Be Grounded

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The labor dispute at El Al has is still ongoing amid El Al recently issuing a warning that that the pilots’ resignation may lead to all flights being grounded. El Al submitted an emergency appeal to the labor court requesting “emergency temporary reliefs.”

An El Al spokesman said: “Such an occurrence would incur much damage to the company, which they couldn’t even begin to estimate. Therefore, the airline appealed to the court, asking them to issue an order stating that the supervisors’ resignation would entail an unlawful strike.”

El Al had already had to cancel many flights, including flights to New York, Moscow, and Boston after their pilots union resumed the labor dispute on Saturday night.

But now the labor court has sent both parties to conduct marathon talks until the beginning of Shabbat. Until now the pilots have not withdrawn their resignation but merely suspended them.

“We have agreed to negotiation until the Shabbat – the resignation letter will not become effective until then. To the extent that the company believes that there is some risk, or that the company’s business is in jeopardy, it is entitled to petition the Labor Tribunal to issue restraining orders. We will enter discussions until it appears that work can be resumed.” Said Histadrut Transport Division Avi Edri chairman.

Edri added “Even the pilots who were at the Tribunal today had visibly hurt feelings, and it is not just a matter of money; it is the way they were treated. Their dignity has been trampled. We are trying to bring the parties closer in every possible way, because after they have been hurt so badly, it is hard to gain their trust.”

Avi Nissenkorn, chairman of the Histadrut Labor Federation, at a press conference in Jerusalem.

Sources informed Globes news that earlier today that Avi Nissenkorn, the Histadrut chairman, proposed a one-month compromise however the pilots’ committee turned it down.

“I want to be released from my job and from management of flights, because the work plan has collapsed. It has nothing to do with the negotiations between the workers and management. I just can’t take responsibility for the passengers’ safety. I can’t work as a fleet manager under the current management.” said 737 fleet manager pilot Roni Zohar, during the discussions.

Developing Story… Stay tuned for updates.