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Originally published Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 7:09 AM

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Spain's Iberia workers call strikes over layoffs

Labor unions representing most workers in Spain's Iberia airline have called 15 days of strikes to protest the company's plans to lay off 4,500 workers.

The Associated Press

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MADRID —

Labor unions representing most workers in Spain's Iberia airline have called 15 days of strikes to protest the company's plans to lay off 4,500 workers.

The stoppages by Iberia's ground staff and cabin crews will be held Feb. 18-22, March 4-8 and March 18-22.

Raul Melero of the USO union said Wednesday that the strikes were called after weeks of negotiations ended without agreement.

The unions involved called off a week of strikes in December so that the negotiations could continue.

The pilots' union, Sepla, is not among six unions backing the strike.

International Airlines Group, which groups together British Airways and Iberia, late last year unveiled a plan to cut 23 percent of the Spanish company's staff, saying the carrier was "in a fight for survival."

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