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Air Berlin cancels dozens of flights

13 September, 2017, 00:32 | Author: Paula Vaughn
  • Air Berlin cancels dozens of flights after filing for sick many pilots

The German government has argued that competition rules prevent any single airline taking over Air Berlin, the country's second-largest carrier after Lufthansa.

The airline said around 200 pilots, mainly captains, had called in sick.

Passengers booked to travel on the cancelled services as part of a package deal should contact their tour operator, Air Berlin said in a statement.

After losing the lifeline of regular cash infusions from Gulf carrier Etihad in June, Air Berlin filed for insolvency on August 15.

Mr Winkelmann said: "This day is costing us several million euros". It is essential that operations be stable in order for these negotiations to go well.

"VC is convinced that talks about a social plan for an orderly staff transfer is the only way to safeguard as many jobs as possible", says the union, adding that it has urged its members at Air Berlin to honour obligations in their labour contracts unless there is an "acute reason" to call in sick.

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The airline has been struggling for some time and over the past two years has announced losses amounting to 1.2bn euros (£1.1bn).

Air Berlin continues to operate due to a 150 million euro ($180 milliom) credit loan from the German government.

The move has also hit Lufthansa subsidiary Eurowings, which said it had been told by Air Berlin at short notice some of the flights the latter carrier runs for it could not be staffed.

"The fear and anger among Air Berlin staff is escalating because the future of whole families is at stake".

Other interested airlines cited in media reports include package holiday firm TUI, British low-priced carrier EasyJet, Thomas Cook subsidiary Condor, as well as Bavarian entrepreneur Hans Rudolf Woehrl.

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