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Air Berlin cancels more flights as pilots call in sick

Reuters  |  FRANKFURT 

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Insolvent cancelled 32 flights on Wednesday as pilots continued to call in sick ahead of a deadline for potential investors to submit bids for parts of Germany's second-largest airline.

filed for bankruptcy protection last month after its biggest shareholder, Etihad Airways, withdrew funding following years of losses.

Parties interested in buying its assets have until Friday to submit binding offers.

On Tuesday, about 100 flights were cancelled after 200 pilots called in sick.

Some short-haul flights at Lufthansa's budget airline Eurowings were also hit because it leases 33 planes with crews from

About 150 pilots called in sick on Wednesday, said.

The airline has said the cancellations threatened its existence and could force it to shut down, jeopardising negotiations with potential investors.

Germany's biggest airline, Lufthansa, is seen in pole position to acquire large parts of its rival and a decision on the bids come could as early as Sept. 21, three days before a national election.

Thomas Cook's German carrier Condor is preparing a bid for parts of Berlin, another source said, while media reports said easyJet may want up to 40 planes.

Aviation investor Hans Rudolf Woehrl said he had submitted a bid for the whole of while German family-owned logistics company Zeitfracht has also expressed interest.

has also attracted buyer interest from China's LinkGlobal Logistics. German newspaper Bild reported on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Maria Sheahan; editing by Jason Neely)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, September 13 2017. 12:58 IST