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Lufthansa Pilots Launch Four-Day Strike

About 4,000 pilots with the German flag carrier Lufthansa, Europe's largest airline, have today launched a strike expected to last four days in a bid to win increased job security.

Around 3,200 Lufthansa flights -- about 800 per day -- are expected to be grounded because of the strike, causing disruptions for some air travelers in Germany and elsewhere around the world.

Lufthansa pilots as well as pilots for Lufthansa Cargo and the company's low-budget subsidiary, Germanwings, are involved in the work stoppage, which is due to run until February 25.

The Cockpit pilot union decided to launch the strike over concerns that Lufthansa could try to cut costs by shifting jobs to foreign pilots, who are willing to fly for less pay.

Lufthansa has estimated that the cancellation of flights during the four-day strike could lead to losses for the airline of about 100 million euros ($136 million).

compiled from agency reports