EgyptAir stewards staged a strike on Friday morning prompting the company to suspend international flights for 12 hours.
Passengers attempting to board international EgyptAir flights were left stranded at Cairo airport's Terminal 3 after the impromptu strike almost completely shut down the terminal with the exception of domestic flights.
The company said in a statement that the flights were suspended in order to make sure "passengers are comfortable and to avoid chaos in the terminal." The company added that domestic flights are proceeding normally.
Police blocked the roads leading to the terminal, and passengers there had walked, dragging their luggage with them.
All the EgyptAir counters were empty, and there was no one from the airline to provide immediate information to passengers. Information was only possibly available at the sole EgyptAir office that was open and upon which hordes of stricken passengers descended. It was not long before fights erupted, after which the employees in the office disappeared further inside the terminal and closed up shop.
The civil aviation sector in Egypt has witnessed several protests and strikes by its labor force recently including a strike by female EgyptAir flight attendants last September demanding the right to wear the veil. Air traffic controllers have also staged strikes over the past years to demand better working conditions.