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German rail staff start 24-hour strike as pay talks stall

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A union representing Germany’s practice drivers started a 24-hour strike Thursday night time, inflicting widespread rail cancellations and journey disruptions throughout the nation

ByThe Related Press

December 8, 2023, 5:23 AM

A person checks his cell phone within the central practice station in Frankfurt, Germany, Friday, Dec. 8, 2023, when practice drivers of the GDL union went on a 24-hour-strike. (AP Picture/Michael Probst)

The Related Press

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BERLIN — A union representing Germany’s practice drivers started a 24-hour strike Thursday night time, inflicting widespread rail cancellations and journey disruptions throughout the nation.

The strike by the GDL union started on Thursday at 10 p.m. (2100 GMT) for passenger providers and can proceed till 10 p.m. (2100 GMT) on Friday. For freight trains, the strike started at 6 p.m. Thursday.

Deutsche Bahn, the German railway, mentioned roughly 20% of its long-distance trains would nonetheless run on Friday however urged clients to delay pointless journey the place doable. The disruptions comply with a significant snowstorm snarled transit in Munich and elements of southern Germany earlier within the week.

This week’s strike got here after negotiations between GDL and Deutsche Bahn broke down after solely two rounds of talks. GDL is looking for a pay improve, a one-time cost to assist counter inflation, and the discount of weekly working hours from 38 to 35. Deutsche Bahn has mentioned it made a suggestion that quantities to an 11% elevate.

Restricted “warning strikes” are a standard tactic in German pay negotiations. The walkout follows a 20-hour strike on Nov. 16, when Deutsche Bahn ran a equally decreased long-distance schedule.

GDL’s power amongst drivers and another railway personnel varies regionally, and a few regional providers run by non-public operators aren’t affected by the dispute.

The strike is predicted to be GDL’s final for the 12 months, however the union could quickly develop its motion. GDL chairman Claus Weselsky informed the German radio station Bayerischer Rundfunk that strikes in early 2024 could possibly be “longer and extra intense” if no settlement is reached.



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