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German rail workers union announce 50-hour strike

GERMAN rail unions called today for a 50-hour strike early next week to bolster its demand for an inflation-related pay raise.

The EVG rail workers union called on its 230,000 members to walk off the job from 10pm on Sunday evening until midnight on Tuesday to bring services to a standstill at about 50 companies that provide rail services across the country.

Pay negotiations between EVG and German railway companies have been taking place since February with the union seeking a 12 per cent wage increase for its members.

This longer strike “increases the pressure significantly, because the employers leave us no other choice,” said Kristian Loroch, EVG’s lead negotiator, according to the news agency DPA.

Deutsche Bahn personnel chief Martin Seiler called the strike “completely unreasonable.”

“Instead of looking for compromises, the EVG wants to paralyse the country for an unbelievable 50 hours.”

The walkout is the third staged by railway workers this year and comes in the wake of strikes in other sectors. 

In late March, a full-day strike paralysed the railway network bringing most of Germany’s airports and some regional transit networks to a standstill.

EVG organised a second strike in April, which affected regional and long-distance rail services in Germany.


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