By Ben Simmons

Rail union RMT has accused Heathrow Express and BAA of ‘engaging in a co-ordinated effort to "behead" the union’.

They allege that senior union official Liaqat Ali has been victimised for his union activities, prompting RMT members to reduce the vital transport link to ‘a skeleton crew’.

RMT said that the union busting operation is being driven by HR Director Joanna Smith who the union understands also works for BAA. RMT believes that the attack on Liaqat Ali is being organised right from the top of BAA as they seek to smash union organisation throughout the British airport industry.

"It is crystal clear that the attack on Liaqat Ali and RMT at Heathrow Express is part of a wider campaign to smash strong union organisation in the airport industry and RMT will fight it all the way,” said the union’s outspoken leader.

“The rock solid strike action by our members on HEX shows that RMT has the strength and determination to take on the BAA/ Heathrow Express bosses in the fight to defend solid trade union organisation.

“There is no doubt as far as RMT is concerned that the attack on our reps and members is a forerunner to an attack on wages and working conditions in the name of fattening up profits and forcing the workforce to bend the knee. RMT members are well aware of just what is at stake in this fight and have proved that resoundingly in this first 24 hour strike.”

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