Strike! Lufthansa cancels 50 flights
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German airline Lufthansa cancelled around 50 flights today ahead of a planned 24-hour strike by cabin crew at six major airports tomorrow.
Domestic and European services were primarily affected, but a number of intercontinental flights were also cancelled, such as New York-Frankfurt and Hong Kong-Munich, according to the carrier's website.
Late yesterday, the cabin staff's labour union, Independent Flight Attendants' Organisation or UFO, said its members will stage a 24-hour stoppage tomorrow at the airports of Frankfurt, Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Duesseldorf and Stuttgart in escalating industrial action over pay and conditions.
Other much shorter walkouts of eight hours last week and earlier this week have grounded hundreds of flights and hit thousands of passengers.
Lufthansa has therefore said it will cancel two-thirds of its total 1,800 flights tomorrow.
According to its latest demands, the union is seeking a five-per cent pay increase backdated to April after three years of wage freezes. It also opposes the use of temporary cabin crew on Lufthansa flights.
"We're prepared to go to mediation on the issue of pay hikes. But negotiations cannot include the use of temporary staff," a Lufthansa spokesman told AFP.
"UFO has not contacted us so far," he added.
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