Budapest airport strike continues, now rail workers get on board
Railway workers began an indefinite strike on Sunday, adding to Hungary's transport woes as disruption continued at Budapest's Ferihegy International Airport for a fifth day, dpa reported.
Hungarian railway workers began their strike at midnight, with the industrial action initially confined to the eastern half of Hungary.
A spokesman for state-owned Hungarian Railways (MAV), Imre Kavalecz, said around half of trains in the main eastern cities of Debrecen and Miskolc had been affected. In other areas 90 per cent of trains were running.
The main rail union, VDSZSZ, is demanding a one-off payment of 250,000 forint (930 euros) to every worker as a share in the proceeds from the recent privatisation of MAV Cargo, the freight division.
Other demands include retrospective compensation payments and the scrapping of a new timetable that includes branch line closures.
The head of the VSZDSZ, Istvan Gasko, announced in the morning that from 1800 Sunday the rail strike would be extended to the whole country. His union planned to hold talks with one of unions behind the strike at Budapest airport.
"In the afternoon, consultations with representatives of the Unified Air Transport Union will continue over how to combine the airport and railway strikes with a view to increasing the pressure," said Gasko.
The leaders of airport workers' unions announced they would hold talks on Sunday with senior management of the airport operator Budapest Airport, including its CEO Jost Lammers.