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Mediation may stop strikes at Lufthansa

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Lufthansa and cabin crew agree to mediation

Mediation could be the key to ending the long-running dispute between Lufthansa and cabin crew over retirement benefits. Both sides have agreed to mediation that could begin in the second half of February after balloting of workers for industrial action ends in January.

Lufthansa pilots went on 10 strikes last year, costing the airline around €200 million in operating profit. Last week they threatened to strike again if no agreement is reached.

“I am confident that amicable and sustainable solutions can be worked out with the support of a mediator,” Lufthansa board member Bettina Volkens said in a statement.

However, Nicoley Baublies, head of UFO, which represents 18,000 cabin crew at Lufthansa, warned that workers will go on strike if resistance from Lufthansa is encountered on separate issues. For example, UFO is also demanding 8% more pay for its members as part of negotiations that began in April 2014.

Reuters

[pictured: Lufthansa A380 cockpit]

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