A labor dispute between the Histradrut labor union and the government has sparked fears that the nation's public transportation could be disrupted during the holiday season.
The government reached an agreement with the Histadrut to provide subsidies to the organization, but the agreement expired nine months ago and has not been renewed since. The Histadrut claims that the absence of these subsidies harms the wages of its employees and has threatened to strike on October 13, the day after Yom Kippur.
Histadrut Chairman Avi Nissenkorn said that state officials were being "irresponsible," and acting in a manner "harmful to the public interest." He vowed to "fight for the rights" of the bus drivers.
Egged spokesman Ron Ratner said that he "regets" that such a situation had arisen, but that the Histadrut and the government had been negotiating for a year and a half without any progress.
A strike following Yom Kippur could potentially cause massive disruptions during the Sukkot holiday, when use of public transportation typically increases significantly.