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Lufthansa delays Brussels Airlines acquisition decision after attacks
[BERLIN] Germany's Lufthansa has postponed until September a decision on the acquisition of Brussels Airlines following last month's deadly attacks on the Belgian capital, the airline said on Wednesday.
The delay would allow the Belgian carrier to resume flights in the wake of the suicide bombings that targeted Brussels airport and a metro station, leaving 32 people dead, Lufthansa said in a statement.
"Our colleagues at Brussels Airlines are currently devoting all their energies and resources to restoring reliable flight operations for their customers at their home airport following these terrible attacks," Lufthansa chief executive Carsten Spohr said in a statement.
"That is a major challenge under the current security provisions, and must now be the priority," he said.
Lufthansa already holds 45 per cent of the airline and, after the March 22 bombings, Brussels Airlines transferred some aircraft to German airports.
"Lufthansa and Brussels Airlines have agreed to extend by a further three months the deadline for Lufthansa to decide on the call option to fully acquire Brussels Airlines' parent company SN Airholding," the airline added.
Under an existing agreement, Lufthansa is required to take the decision, through which it could acquire the remaining 55 per cent of SN Airholding, by the beginning of June.
"This deadline has now been extended to the end of August," it added.