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Unions Decry Alitalia's Plan to Cut Jobs but Will Continue Talks

September 08, 2004|From Associated Press

Union leaders in Italy slammed Alitalia's plans to cut 5,000 jobs as part of restructuring efforts aimed at averting a collapse. But they said Tuesday that they would keep negotiating and hold off any strike action.

The state-run airline's plan to shed almost a quarter of its 22,000-person labor force has angered workers, who blame management for the state of the airline's finances.

Alitalia says it has enough liquidity to pay salaries until the end of this month.

After an afternoon meeting Tuesday, the various unions agreed that "it is not the moment to go out on strike," one leader, Fabrizio Solari, told the ANSA news agency. The pilots union also announced that members would keep working.

The airline said the layoffs would allow it to save about $380 million by 2006.

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