On Thursday, over 300 taxis from Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain and Switzerland blocked the roads in Brussels, with drivers demanding clarity on the Uber scandal and pledging to defend their interests from what they perceive as unfair competition from the private passenger transport company in the sector.
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The demonstration followed the "Uber Files" investigation in July, which exposed through leaked internal documents how the company circumvented regulations and approached lawmakers, as it expanded its services throughout Europe.
European taxi associations are now calling for thorough investigations at both European and national levels into leaked Uber data, including more than 124,000 internal files, memos, calendars, WhatsApp messages and other data files from the period 2013-2017.
"We have come to demonstrate here in Brussels in front of the European Commission because there have been failures at the European level, which has allowed Uber to interfere in the transport market throughout Europe, and even on the other side of the Atlantic," Zerrad Younes, president of "Elite Taxi Belgium", the organizer of the demonstration, said.
The tweet reads, "International demonstration against Uber today in the streets of Brussels with French, Spanish, Portuguese, British, Greek, Italian and other European taxis."
"We want to defend our rights against Uber and the (ride hailing) platform (it operates), (because it) wants us to remain unprotected and without minimum wage", added Angelo, a taxi driver from the Italian association.
Walid Danida, president of the French association "Team taxi", which brings together hundreds of drivers, said that platforms like Uber that act illegally with the help of politicians, have undermined their profession and harmed their interests.
To overcome this situation, European taxi drivers now want to see Recommendation 2022/C62/01, which promotes the deregulation of public taxi services, withdrawn, the demonstrators said.