Ryanair chaos latest: Flights of 3,500 passengers cancelled next Friday as Irish pilots confirm 5th strike

Ryanair chaos latest: Flights of 3,500 passengers cancelled next Friday as Irish pilots confirm 5th strike

RYANAIR has confirmed that 100 of its Dublin-based pilots will strike for a fifth day on Friday, August 10 - the same day as their colleagues in Sweden and Belgium.

The budget airline's pilots in Germany and Holland have also overwhelmingly backed industrial action, but are yet to confirm any dates for walkouts.

In a statement this afternoon, the Irish pilots' union Fórsa blamed Ryanair for escalating this summer's ongoing dispute by warning of potential job cuts last Wednesday.

"For over a month, the union has said that industrial action is likely to continue until there is substantial movement on the pilots’ reasonable demands for an agreement on a fair and transparent approach to base transfers and related matters," Fórsa said.

"In the 19 days since the first one-day strike took place, company management has agreed to just two hours of talks, despite Fórsa’s repeated assurance that it is available for discussions at any time. The union has today told Ryanair that it remains available for talks".

The union added: "The airline’s escalation of the dispute last Wednesday (25 July) – when it threatened to sack 100 pilots and 200 cabin crew, or transfer them to Poland – led to a predictable hardening of resolve among its staff."

Ryanair previously invited Fórsa to talks this coming Tuesday, August 7, in a bid to prevent strike action at Dublin Airport’s Terminal 1.

However, union members have taken issue with the airline's condition that further strikes be ruled out in order for the meeting to go ahead.

Fórsa described the condition as "virtually unprecedented in similar situations across Irish industrial relations".

However, the union reiterated that it remains open to talks and is even prepared to explore the option of third-party facilitation - which to date has been ruled out by Ryanair.

Some 20 Ryanair flights scheduled to fly between Ireland and the UK next Friday have been cancelled ahead of the day's strike, affecting around 3,500 passengers.

Airline chiefs claim all passengers left stranded by the cancellations were notified last week by email or text message.