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Lufthansa flight attendants to strike on Tuesday

The trade union that represents Lufthansa flight attendants has announced plans to hold a second round of strikes this coming Tuesday. Among other things, The UFO union is seeking higher wages for its members.

The first round of strikes came last Friday when flights to-and-from Germany's busiest hub, Frankfurt Airport, were the focus of the work stoppage. The eight-hour strike forced the cancellation of 190 mainly domestic and inner European Lufthansa flights. At one point, the resulting backlog of aircraft stuck on the apron at Frankfurt forced the company that operates the airport to temporarily shut it down entirely.

A UFO spokesman refused to provide details on which airports would be hit by Tuesday's strikes, but he did tell the DPA news agency that they would be more widespread than Friday's "in terms of both location and time." He said that further details would not be provided until six hours before the strike action was to begin.

However the Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper reports in its Monday edition that the union is believed to be leaning towards the airports at Düsseldorf, Munich and Berlin as their next targets.

Lufthansa reacted to the news by expressing regret at the apparent decision by the union to escalate the labor dispute.

"We continue to be convinced of the attractiveness of the offer we made," a Lufthansa spokesman in Frankfurt said on Sunday evening.

Part of that offer is a 3.5 percent pay rise. The union, however, is seeking a five percent hike, backdated to January of this year.

pfd/jr (dpa, DAPD, Reuters, AFP)