After IT Glitch, Lufthansa Cancels 1,300 Flights Due to Strikes at Major Airports on Friday
Edited By: Pritha Mallick
Last Updated: February 16, 2023, 23:18 IST
A Lufthansa’s aircraft is seen on the tarmac on Friday. (Reuters)
Lufthansa’s statement came after German trade union Verdi called on workers at Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg, Dortmund, Hanover and Bremen airports to go on a 24-hour strike
Germany’s flagship carrier Lufthansa on Thursday cancelled over 1,300 flights scheduled for February 17 from Frankfurt and Munich ahead of planned strikes at seven German airports by labour union Verdi.
The airline, in a statement, has said, “expect regular flight operations to be largely back to normal as early as February 18.”
The statement came after German trade union Verdi called on Wednesday workers at Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg, Dortmund, Hanover and Bremen airports to go on a 24-hour strike, saying collective bargaining efforts had made little progress. The warning strike is to begin early Friday morning and end on Saturday night, reports stated, adding relief deliveries for earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria will be exempt from the strike.
“The employees are jointly putting pressure on the respective employers because no results have been achieved in the previous negotiations,” Verdi official Christine Behle was quoted as saying by Bloomberg in a statement, pointing to the next round of talks on February 22.
Lufthansa is already suffering from massive delays after a group-wide IT system failure stranded thousands of passengers on Wednesday. According to the Frankfurt Airport website, reports of Lufthansa flight disruptions started from around 0700 GMT and about 120 in and outbound flights at the airport were cancelled.
The airline has blamed on underground engineering works at a railway station in Frankfurt cutting several fibre optic cables.
Why is German trade union Verdi Protesting?
German trade union Verdi demands pay increases citing the rising cost of living expenses. The labour union is negotiating for three groups of workers: ground service staff, public sector officials and aviation security workers.
In its statement on Wednesday, it warned that functions allowing full flight operations would be suspended at the airport as a result and urged travellers to avoid the airport on Friday.
The strike is expected to affect domestic travel in particular, according to the union, which said it had given advance warning about the strike so passengers could find alternative options, according to Reuters.
The walkout also coincides with the start of the 59th Munich Security Conference, which brings hundreds of delegates to the Bavarian capital, including several global leaders.
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