Represenatives of air traffic controllers in Europe and Canada criticized the Reagan administration's handling of strike here, and indicated that they would consider som ekind of sympathy action to support their U.S. colleagues.
News services reported expressions of support for the American controllers from Canada and several European countries.
William Robertson, president of the Canadian Air Traffic Controllers Association, said the possibility of a midair collision has increased because of the use of "unqualified personnel" in American control towers, United Press International reported
"There have been 14 near-misses so far since the strike began," Robertson said. "Any time you replace normal personnel with unqualified personnel, including the military, you have the makings of a midair collision."
U.S. officials denied the reported near-misses. Transportation Secretary Drew Lewis said only one such incident had been confirmed.
In London, Dough Busch, chairman of the Air Traffic Control Officers, said the Reagan administration's firing of the striking controllers and jailing of their leaders was "not civilized," and said his union would consider staging a sympathy strike if asked to do so by the American controllers. UPI quoted him as saying that so far no such request has been received.
British controllers, members of the 500,000-member civil service union, just ended a 21-week series of rotating strikes. The civil servants won a 7 1/2 percent pay raise, half of what they had demanded.
Industry sources said that the U.S. controllers' strike has had virtually no effect on flights to other countries.
"When we started out Monday, there were a few delays getting aircraft out of Europe because of the uncertainty here," a TWA offcial said. "But since then, we've been running 100 percent . . . and the average delay time was minimal."
"We haven't canceled a flight yet," said an official of Pan American World Airways, the U.S. airline with the most extensive foreign route system.
A British Airways spokesman confirmed their reports. He also threw cold water on the reports of a possible sympathy strike by British controllers, who, he said, received little support from their American counterparts during their recent strike.
But British union leader Busch said, "There is a vast degree of sympathy among out members after the way in which the U.S. administration has been behaving toward the controllers. Clapping people in irons and carting them off to jail is not civilized behavior in 20th century society."
Ted Bradshaw, one of five board members of the International Federation of Air Traffic Controller Associations, which represents unions in 61 nationsl, said there was unanimous support for the striking U.S. controllers, The Associated Press reported.
"Every member in Europe is firmly behind some form of action" to support their American colleagues, he said.
Bradshaw later issued a statement on behalf of the board calling on unions to "consider refusing air traffic control services to U.S.-registered airplanes" and another board member said the group is asking that no planes be cleared across U.S. borders for safety reasons.
In Paris, French traffic controllers said they would study all "possibilities within our means" to act, Reuter news service said.
"The hours they are demanding [32 per week] are the same as we have had for years. Why should the Americans not have what their European collegues have had for years?
In Ottawa, Robertson said, "As fellow air traffic controllers we understand the issues and support their claims.
"Because of the close and common relationship we have with the American controllers we are in constant contact and that includes support for them," he added.
Lex Hendriks, president of the Dutch Air Traffic Controllers Guild, said his union had sent President Reagan a telegram urging him to withdraw his decision to fire the strikers and consider new talks.
Strikes by air traffic controllers are not unusual in Europe, The AP reported. They are legal in many countries, and in those where they are not, controllers often have won demands by holding work slowdowns.
In addition to the British, controllers have staged strikes or slowdowns in the past year in Italy, Spain, Belgium, Denmark and Greece.
Like the American controllers, the Europeans complain of stress, low pay levels and understaffing in control towers.