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Download Newsflash – MAY

Air France Workers to Decide on More Stike Action

Air France workers are to meet to decide on which days in May to continue strike action. Previous strikes have caused severe disruption both domestically and internationally. Meanwhile a general strike is planned for the 22nd of May. Air France workers as well as air traffic controllers joined the last general strike. It is likely that they will join the planned general action.

Plans to Reduce Queues at Home Affairs

Some of the first short-term actions to reduce the length of time waiting in queues at Home Affairs. Offices have been divided into green, yellow and red status according to their current performance. As such “performance ratings and performance management interventions” would be rolled out at all red offices. Further interventions to be implemented include the piloting of a one-stop workstation that would take fingerprints and photographs. The department was also hoping to roll out its “e-homeaffairs” service across ABSA, FNB, Nedbank and Standard Bank across the country over the next year.

Thailand – Temporary Closing of the Beach

Authorities in Thailand have ordered the temporary closing of the beach to halt environmental damage caused by too many tourists. Maya Bay, Phi Phi Leh island in the Andaman Sea will be closed to all visitors for four months annually starting this June to allow for the recovery of the island’s coral reefs and sea life. Many Thai marine national parks are closed from mid-May to mid-October. When Maya Bay reopens the department will set a daily limit of 2,000 tourists while boats will no longer be allowed to anchor there and will have to dock on the opposite side of the island at floating piers.

Airlink Launches JNB-PE Services

Airlink has announced that they will be launching direct flights between Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth from the 6th of May. Flying from OR Tambo International Airport.

USA-Social Media History Screening for Visas Being Mulled

The US is looking to screen social media history before issuing visas. The State Department says that most immigrant and non-immigrant visa applicants could be required to list all social media account details for the past five years. This data will be used to vet each applicant. All email addresses and phone numbers may also be required. Previously this data was only required when applicants were singled out for extra scrutiny based on criteria such as previous travel history in high risk regions.

Germany – Frankfurt Airport Gets a New Lounge

Passengers can now pass the time in the spacious and luxuriously furnished Primeclass Lounge while enjoying its first-rate service regardless of their airline and booking class. It features comfortable seating for up to 70 people with a large selection of food and beverages and other services. It is located in Concourse E of Terminal 2 behind the passport check. Admission costs €30 covering a stay of up three hours.

Etihad Airways Suspends Two Routes

Etihad Airways will suspend flights to Perth and Edinburgh from the 1st of October.

Border Checks to Remain in Place

France is to keep border checks with countries in Europe’s passport-free zone for a further six months due to the continued threat of terror attacks. Although the 26-Nation Schengen zone is supposed to allow free movement across borders France brought back passport checks at its borders. The decision has to be renewed every six months. Austria will also extend its border controls for six months. Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Norway have also imposed controls.

Kings Rename Swaziland

Swaziland’s King Mswati III has announced that his country has changed its name to eSwatini to mark 50 years since independence from British rule. The new name means “place of the Swazi”. Swaziland did not change its name when it gained independence in 1968 after being a British protectorate for more than 60 years.King Mswati III declared the name change during independence day celebrations.The name change means the country’s constitution will be rewritten and there will be changes to the Royal Swaziland Police Force, the Swaziland Defence Force and the University of Swaziland.




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