After sacking its top Belgian management in Brussels, German national flag carrier Lufthansa announced on February 7 that Brussels Airlines would be in charge of coordinating long-haul operations with Lufthansa’s budget airline subsidiary, Eurowings, in Brussels, Duesseldorf, and Munich.

Lufthansa first took partial control of Brussels Airlines, the Belgian national flag carrier, in late 2016. After this week’s management shake-up, business leaders and unions in Belgium questioned whether jobs, as well as destinations from the Belgian capital – especially to Africa – could be affected should Lufthansa merge the Belgian airline into Eurowings.

Lufthansa gave reassurances saying Brussels Airlines would retain its “Belgian-ness” while working within the Eurowings unit.

Italy’s flagship airline Alitalia is also looking for buyers, but Lufthansa made it clear it was only interested in buying the ailing Italian giant if it could be rebranded and restructured – neither of which appeared to be on offer for the time being.

Lufthansa’s new dark blue plane uniform for stewards and cabin attendants, unveiled on February 7, has also caused fierce debate on social media after it was leaked the week before. Some observers labelled the new patterns boring and mourned the loss of the distinctive yellow colour from the crane logo on the tail of the aircraft.