April 23, 2024

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It hits ground flights at German airports, and a railway strike ensues

It hits ground flights at German airports, and a railway strike ensues

BERLIN (Reuters) – An industrial strike grounded dozens of flights at two major German airports on Monday as security workers and ground staff in the capitals Berlin and Hamburg staged one-day strikes to protest wages.

Berlin-Brandenburg Airport canceled all departures and said some landings would also be affected after the Verdi union called in security workers to strike until midnight (2200 GMT). Approximately 240 flights were scheduled to take off.

As in other countries, Europe’s largest economy has seen frequent strike turbulence as workers press for more wages and better working conditions to address the rising cost of living.

While public sector workers agreed to a wage deal with employers in a separate dispute over the weekend, which led to some respite, Verdi announced another wave of rail strikes in five federal states to be held on Wednesday.

Staff from Hamburg’s Special Flight Handling Services (AHS), who handle check-in, boarding, loss and find procedures at a number of airlines including Lufthansa (LHAG.DE) at Hamburg Airport, are also called a 24-hour strike at Shortly.

Hamburg Airport said neither incoming flights nor flights served by other airlines are expected to be affected. AHS was scheduled to handle 84 of the 160 flights on Monday.

Last week, the airports of Dusseldorf, Hamburg, Cologne-Bonn and Stuttgart were hit by strikes.

ADV chief executive Ralph Bissell said unions are taking their prerogative to carry out pre-arbitration warning strikes to absurd lengths.

In a separate statement on Monday, Verdi announced a strike by 5,000 railway workers who are pressing for a salary increase of 550 euros ($605) per month.

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“Employees and their families have been hit hard by the recent price increases,” said Verdi negotiator Volker Noss. “It needs a significant increase to absorb the increased costs.”

($1 = 0.9088 euros)

Written by Madeline Chambers. Editing by Susan Fenton

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