Strikes hit 2 German airports in public workers pay dispute

February 27, 2023 GMT
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Strikers in warning clothing hold a banner of the trade union Verdi with the inscription: "End with overload!" in Cologne, Germany, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. Airport security staff at Cologne Bonn Airport are on strike for better wages since this evening. (Thomas Banneyer/dpa via AP)
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Strikers in warning clothing hold a banner of the trade union Verdi with the inscription: "End with overload!" in Cologne, Germany, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. Airport security staff at Cologne Bonn Airport are on strike for better wages since this evening. (Thomas Banneyer/dpa via AP)

BERLIN (AP) — Nearly all flights at Germany’s Cologne-Bonn airport and the majority at nearby Duesseldorf were canceled or diverted on Monday as a result of strikes that also affected local transportation, day-care facilities and local administration in Germany’s most populous region.

Cologne-Bonn airport said that all but two of the day’s 136 planned flights wouldn’t depart from or arrive there, German news agency dpa reported. In Dusseldorf, only 89 of the planned 330 flights were expected to take place as scheduled, with most of the rest being canceled.

The one-day “warning strike” by airport security staff comes amid difficult pay talks for employees of Germany’s federal and municipal governments and for airport security staff.

Walkouts planned Monday also were set to affect buses and trams in parts of the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as day-care centers for children and other services.

Unions are seeking a 10.5% pay raise, while employers so far have offered an increase totaling 5% in two stages and one-time payments of 2,500 euros ($2,630) per employee — which unions have rejected as insufficient.