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The owners of Eastern Airlines are trying to dismantle the financially troubled passenger carrier in an effort to break its unions, the union representing 13,000 Eastern workers alleges in a federal lawsuit.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO, filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court here. The 81-page complaint alleges that Frank Lorenzo's Texas Air Corp. was trying to undermine the union's legal right to represent Eastern employees by transferring the airline's assets to other subsidiaries of the parent.