By Benjamin Katz
LONDON -- Two top executives at British Airways, the U.K. flag carrier, are leaving the company in the wake of a damaging pilot walkout last year and amid a transition at the carrier's parent to a new chief executive.
British Airways' chief operating officer and its director of people are leaving the carrier after last year's tense standoff with pilots, which led to the airline's first strike in decades.
COO Klaus Goersch and People Director Angela Williams will both step down, the company confirmed in a statement to The Wall Street Journal. BA's pilots reported directly to Mr. Goersch, while Ms. Williams was in charge of industrial relations.
The dispute with BA's pilots last year over pay terms and benefits led to a 48-hour walkout in September, the first in about 40 years. The carrier was forced to cancel around 1,700 flights, disrupting travel for some 200,000 passengers.
The executive changes follow an announcement last month that Willie Walsh, chief executive of BA's parent company, International Consolidated Airlines Group SA, would be stepping down in late March and retiring at the end of June, marking 2020 as a transitional year for the group's leadership.
Former Director of Engineering Jason Mahoney has been appointed as new COO at BA, the company said. Former people director at IAG Cargo, Stuart Kennedy, will take over the role at BA.
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