On Friday, nearly 300,000 passengers were affected by a 24-hour strike at seven German airports, including Frankfurt and Munich, as unionized workers pushed for higher wages and warned of a summer of “chaos” if their demands were not met. The strike coincided with the start of the Munich Security Conference, with more than 40 heads of state and 60 ministers in attendance. Romania’s foreign minister, unable to board a cancelled flight, was forced to fly to Austria and then make the more than four-hour drive to Munich.
The strike is part of a series of protests that have hit major European economies, including France, Britain, and Spain, due to higher food and energy prices and the war in Ukraine. The cancellation of some 2,340 flights at Bremen, Dortmund, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hanover, Munich, and Stuttgart airports affected 295,000 passengers, according to the ADV airports association. German trade union Verdi announced the strike on Wednesday after collective bargaining efforts for ground service staff, public sector officials, and aviation security workers had made little progress. The union has called for a 10.5 percent wage increase, or at least 500 euros a month.
Lufthansa reported that it had been forced to cancel more than 1,300 flights and suspend operations at the hub airports Frankfurt and Munich on Friday. The carrier has previously stated that such action costs it 10–15 million euros a day. Verdi’s head, Frank Werneke, told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung newspaper that strike action could expand to hospitals and garbage collection. ($1 = 0.9394 euros) By Klaus Lauer.
Leave a Reply