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Boeing Workers Reject New Contract, Vote to Strike

Machinists for the U.S. airplane maker Boeing voted to strike Friday, after rejecting a new contract offer.

Union members voted late Thursday to authorize the strike by more than 18,000 workers who manufacture components and assemble planes.

Boeing officials expressed disappointment at the vote. In a written statement, they said they will not assemble airplanes during the strike. Earlier, Boeing officials warned a strike would be devastating to the company.

Union leaders had urged members to reject the new contract, saying it failed to meet their demands on health care and pension benefits.

Boeing managers were seeking to cut some benefit costs, which they say have risen sharply in recent years.

Boeing is currently locked in a trade dispute with its European rival Airbus over government subsidies.