News World Jakarta taxi drivers’ protest turns violent

Jakarta taxi drivers’ protest turns violent

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Jakarta’s taxi drivers have jumped on cars, hurled stones and caused traffic jams stretching kilometres in an angry protest over ride-hailing apps.

Filling three lanes of traffic, the disgruntled cabbies massed outside Parliament House in Indonesia’s capital on Tuesday afternoon in a show of rage against the increasing popularity of apps such as Uber and Grab Car.

“We will fight until the last drop of our blood,” one protester vowed.

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Others cried out: “We want justice” and “Help us shoot down Uber and Grab Car”.

Angry drivers smashed taxis not participating in the protest. Photo: AAP
Angry drivers smashed other taxis and cars. Photo: AAP

As Jakarta’s traffic woes continued with major arterial road Jalan Sudirman closed, Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advised travellers to exercise a “high degree of caution” across Indonesia, including Bali.

“There are reports some passengers have been forced to disembark from passing taxis and other forms of public transport,” DFAT warned.

“Travellers are reminded that demonstrations and rallies can turn violent with little notice.”

During the heated protest a stone-throwing fight broke out between cabbies and motorbike taxi drivers, known locally as “ojek” riders.

This was in retaliation for a reported attack on an ojek rider by a taxi driver, a witness told AAP.

Footage then emerged of taxi drivers jumping on the roofs of those cabbies not taking part in the action.

Even the brightly coloured blue, three-wheeled vehicles known as “bajaj” were not safe, with taxi drivers believed to have overturned one and smashed its windscreen.

Taxi driver Aris told AAP he wanted online taxi services to be banned as they had cut his income dramatically.

“I used to get 200,000 to 300,000 rupiah ($A30) a day but now 50,000 is like a blessing,” the 30-year-old said.


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