11 Jun 2010

Flight cancelled as Tahiti strike gathers pace

2:15 pm on 11 June 2010

One international flight to French Polynesia has been cancelled after a call for a general strike led to some disruptions in Tahiti.

Domestic flights in and out of Tahiti have operated as planned but a flight by Air Calin has been cancelled amid concern that the strike will leave the airport short of the required number of firefighters.

An Air Tahiti Nui flight from Paris due tonight is blocked in Los Angeles.

The strike, which started in the early hours, followed unsuccessful talks with the government and the French high commission over union demands to relaunch the economy, improving employment and reforming social security provisions.

The action has paralysed the Papeete port, stopping the Moorea ferry but schools managed to open for the national French school exams.

There are reports of sit-ins at some public buildings, involving a cross-section of employees.

Unsuccessful talks were held yesterday in a bid to find an agreement and a further meeting between the collective of 11 unions and the government is due to be held later today.