Lufthansa strike starts Friday Frankfurt
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* UFO union calls on its members to strike from 0300 GMT to 1100 GMT
* UFO union says strike could continue for very long time
* Lufthansa says will cancel 25 pct of flights during strike
* Lufthansa shares close up 0.5 percent, DAX index down 1.6 pct
Lufthansa passengers face widespread flight disruption from Friday after cabin crew representatives said they would start a series of strikes over pay and cost-cutting measures at Germany's largest airline.
The UFO union, which represents around two-thirds of Lufthansa's 19,000 cabin crew, late on Thursday called on its members to strike from 0300 GMT to 1100 GMT on Friday in Frankfurt.
UFO calls on its members within Lufthansa to participate in the strike in Frankfurt from 0500 to 1300 hours (local), UFO said in an emailed statement.
Lufthansa plans to cancel 64 flights, or 25 percent of the flights during the duration of the strike, a spokesman said.
The strike would also lead to unplanned delays, the company said in a statement on its website. The airline planned to operate a total of 840 flights on Friday.
Financial Times Deutschland had reported before cabin crew members were preparing to hold the strikes in Frankfurt and Munich, citing UFO sources. It said on its website the union was discussing whether the strikes would also include Berlin.
The strikes come as Lufthansa cuts jobs and implements a three-year cost-cutting programme to boost margins and finance investment in planes in the face of a weakening economy, high fuel costs and increased competition from low-cost carriers.
Germany's leading airline, which operates around 1,850 flights daily mostly from Frankfurt and Munich, needs to generate more profit to pay for 17 billion euros ($21 billion) of more fuel-efficient aircraft on order.
Lufthansa and the UFO union have been negotiating for 13 months, with the union demanding a 5 percent pay rise and guarantees that Lufthansa will not outsource jobs and use more temporary workers, as it has already done in Berlin.
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