TEL AVIV May 9 El Al Israel Airlines
said its flight schedule had been disrupted on Friday after
pilots did not show up for work as part of a labour protest,
grounding four planes in Tel Aviv overnight.
Three other outgoing flights, one of them to New York, were
postponed by the pilot no-show, an El Al official said, adding
that as a result some return flights may lag. Dozens of other
flights were on schedule, the official said.
The disruption appeared likely to be contained by the onset
of the Jewish Sabbath, between Friday evening and Saturday
evening, when Israel's flag carrier does not operate. The El Al
official said negotiations were under way with the pilots to
prevent further problems.
Nir Tzuk, chairman of the El Al Pilots Council, said the
protest was a response to the overbooking of air crews.
"We will not turn up to fly tired, and the situation right
now is one of a very, very great overload," he told Israel's
Army Radio in an interview.
(Writing by Dan Williams; Editing by Crispian Balmer)