Thousands of Jerusalemites rallied in the capital’s Old City on Saturday in a protest against the taxi service provider that provides some of the city’s most important transportation services, as the taxi industry grapples with a shortage of money.
On Saturday, hundreds of demonstrators gathered in central Jerusalem’s Old Town, demanding that the taxi operator provide them with a basic fare.
They chanted “Taxi service is free!” and “Taxis are free!” as they held up banners with slogans such as “Rise up!
Raise up!” and other slogans.
Many protesters carried banners that read “Taxicab drivers, please, pay our money” and “We want a taxi, we need a reliable one.”
“We’re demanding money for the taxi drivers,” said Aya Eliahu, a taxi driver.
“Taxy drivers, get out of the cab, pay your fare.
I’m a taxi cab driver, I need a taxi.”
Eliahu said he has been driving for Uber for three years, but the company is not providing him with a fare.
“The fares are too low, the drivers are not paying the money, and they don’t have time,” he said.
Uber declined to comment on the protest.
While the taxi sector is still in a difficult financial position, the Israeli government has recently pledged to invest more in it, with plans to create a private sector taxi service and improve access to public transport.
The government is also trying to reform the industry to provide for more drivers and better training, which has been slow in recent years.
In response, Uber launched a service in Jerusalem, called UberTaxis in the Old City, that enables customers to hail taxis in the city, which is popular with tourists.
Uber has struggled to provide reliable service for the Palestinian and Arab communities, as it has been unable to pay drivers for hours at a time.
The company has also faced accusations that its drivers are illegally driving passengers through checkpoints to the Gaza Strip, which Israel captured in the 1967 Six-Day War.
In recent years, the Palestinian Authority has started to pay its drivers salaries, which it had previously refused to do, saying the drivers were being paid a fixed wage, not a monthly wage.
But the drivers’ protests are not the only reason why taxi drivers are calling for their demands to be met.
Many drivers have also expressed frustration with Uber’s low rates, and have demanded better training for their drivers.
The protests were held as part of the annual Fatima celebrations marking the end of Ramadan, a religious observance that celebrates the birth of the Prophet Muhammad.
Fatima, which falls in March, is the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.