Qantas Airways grounds all of its planes worldwide

Australian flag carrier Qantas on Saturday took the drastic step of grounding all its domestic and international aircraft as part of an industrial dispute.

The carrier, which has been hit by a series of strikes, said all employees involved in the action would be locked out from Monday evening and flights grounded from 6am GMT Saturday.

“Pilots, licensed engineers and baggage, ground and catering staff are essential to Qantas operations and the lockout will therefore make it necessary for all Qantas aircraft to be grounded,” the airline said.

“Aircraft currently in the air will complete the sectors they are operating. However, there will be no further Qantas domestic departures or international departures anywhere in the world.” — Sapa-AFP

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