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German airline Discover’s pilots to strike

BERLIN (AFP): Pilots with the German airline Discover, a subsidiary of Lufthansa, announced they would stage a fresh 48-hour strike from Monday, accusing management of refusing to respect collective agreements.

Friday’ announcement, by the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union, came a week after a strike called by the pilots and air stewards last week and a five-hour stoppage before Christmas.

“Even after two days of strike, Discover’s management still hasn’t made an offer,” said Marcel Groels, who is negotiating for VC, which represents 9,600 pilots in Germany.

The pilots want agreement on a structured salary scale and fixed conditions for flights and rest times.

Discover Airlines, which until last September was known as Eurowings Discover, is part of the Lufthansa group and employs 2,000 people.

Based in Frankfurt, southern Germany, it has a fleet of 24 planes handling short-, medium- and long-haul flights to tourist destinations.

This latest strike comes as Germany faces a growing wave of social unrest in the transport sector.

On Friday, public transport workers across Germany walked off the job.

On Thursday, tens of thousands of passengers were grounded on Thursday as airport security staff across the country staged a walkout.

And last week, train drivers staged a five-day walkout, their longest ever and the fourth time they have gone on strike since November.

The Verdi union, which represents ground staff at Lufthansa, has also warned that a strike for the whole group is “very probable”, with wage talks stalled.