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France battles transport disruption amid taxi and aviation strikes

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By Euronews
France battles transport disruption amid taxi and aviation strikes

Police and fire-fighters in Paris had to intervene on Tuesday morning after striking taxi drivers threw tyres across a busy ring-road and set them on fire.

Twenty people have reportedly been arrested.

Speaking in Paris, Karim Asnoun, Secretary General of the CGT Taxi Union, explained why French taxi drivers are angry about competition from private car ride firms like Uber:

“It’s a Europe-wide mobilisation because all of our colleagues (taxi drivers) are affected by these deregulations, which favour multinationals that have apps and are functioning illegally.”

Valencia-based taxi driver Alfredo Ferriz Iglesias said: “We came here to support the French drivers.”

“We feel that if we support them in such in important capital like Paris we can put an end to this nightmare.”

Meanwhile, flights into and out of France were also facing severe disruptions.

Two unions representing air traffic controllers were holding a strike, that started on Tuesday morning and is due to end on Wednesday morning, to demand higher pay and pensions.

Earlier, France’s civil aviation authority called for airlines to cancel 20 percent of Tuesday’s flights in preparation for the disruption that the strike would cause.