Air traffic control staff and cabin crews to strike in Italy on 17 July

Third strike by airline workers in Italy in recent weeks.

Flight attendants and pilots from low-cost airlines Ryanair, easyJet, Volotea and Malta Air, along with staff from cabin crew agency CrewLink and air traffic control agency ENAV, are to stage a four-hour strike in Italy on Sunday 17 July.

The industrial action - the third in a month - will be held from 14.00 until 18.00 and has been co-ordinated by Italy's Filt Cgil and Uiltrasporti trade unions in protest over working conditions and employment contracts.

ITA Airways has cancelled 122 flights on Sunday as a result of the strike, reports newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano.

"To date, in the absence of concrete initiatives towards improving working conditions and adjusting wages, the strike of Ryanair pilots and flight attendants remains confirmed for Sunday 17" July, said the national secretary of Filt Cgil, Fabrizio Cuscito, following talks with officials from Italy's ministry of sustainable infrastructure and mobility.

The strike was criticised by consumer rights associations including Assoutenti whose president Furio Truzzi said: "It is right for workers to stand up for their rights but blocking air travel during the summer is unacceptable. Suspending flights when millions of citizens travel by plane to reach their holiday destinations is a hostile act towards travellers who risk unjustly losing vacation days and money."

Italian consumer rights group Codacons slammed the "irresponsible" strike, which would see "citizens used as hostages" during the peak summer holiday period, and called on all sides to engage in urgent discussions to find a resolution.

Italy's civil aviation authority ENAC reminds air travellers that flights are guaranteed during strikes from 07.00-10.00 and 18.00-21.00.

This article was updated on Friday 15 July.