Europe

UK faces strike-hit Christmas by post, train and air

FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016 file photo, passengers queue up for an express train to Gatwick Airport, running a reduced service as a result of a train strike, in Victoria rail station London. The United Kingdom faces a Christmas of discontent as labor unions threaten to disrupt airports, rail services and mail deliveries.
The Unite union and aviation services company Swissport announced negotiation plans Saturday, Dec. 17 intended to avert a Dec. 23 walkout by 1,500 baggage handlers, check-in staff and other workers at 18 airports. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file)

FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016 file photo, passengers queue up for an express train to Gatwick Airport, running a reduced service as a result of a train strike, in Victoria rail station London. The United Kingdom faces a Christmas of discontent as labor unions threaten to disrupt airports, rail services and mail deliveries. The Unite union and aviation services company Swissport announced negotiation plans Saturday, Dec. 17 intended to avert a Dec. 23 walkout by 1,500 baggage handlers, check-in staff and other workers at 18 airports. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file)  (The Associated Press)

The United Kingdom faces a Christmas of discontent as labor unions threaten to disrupt airports, rail services and mail deliveries.

The Unite union and aviation services company Swissport announced negotiation plans Saturday intended to avert a Dec. 23 walkout by 1,500 baggage handlers, check-in staff and other workers at 18 airports. Unite general secretary Len McCluskey says he hopes "fairness will prevail" in Tuesday's talks.

At British Airways, a fourth of the airline's cabin crew members are planning a two-day strike starting on Christmas Day Dec. 25. British Airways condemned Unite's timing and vowed to ensure that all customers reached their holiday destinations.

Strikes at Southern Railway already have disrupted much of England's train services this month.

The Communication Workers Union plans a Post Office strike starting Monday through Christmas Eve.