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Conflict Incident Report

Drivers attempt to storm TV studio during Uber debate

Date of incident: 
December 23, 2017
Death toll: 
Number of Injured: 
Actors/Parties Involved: 
Lebanese Civilians

A clash between Uber and taxi drivers broke out outside a Beirut TV station at night as the groups attempted to storm local channel Al-Jadeed’s studios during a live broadcast debate on Uber’s operations in Lebanon. The incident took place during the broadcast of Tony Khalife’s prime-time TV show “Eye to Eye.”

The show featured a heated debate between Fadi al-Fariq, a driver with the popular ride-hailing app Uber, Charles Bou Hard, owner of Charles Taxi and president of the taxi company owners’ union, and Abdel-Hafiz al-Qaisi of the Transportation Ministry. It was just a small part of the wider debate on Uber that has played out across the country’s media over the last week following the murder of British national Rebecca Dykes by a registered Uber driver.

A crowd gathered outside the Al-Jadeed studios while the debate was taking place, comprised of two factions: one of Uber Drivers, the other of Charlie Taxi drivers. Clashes broke out, although sources from Al-Jadeed TV told The Daily Star that frustrations were directed at the two sides, rather than against studio staff. A statement from Al-Jadeed clarified that reports studio staff had been attacked were untrue.

This security incident was mapped according to the closest possible location.
Primary category: 
Collective Action [inc. protests, solidarity movements...]
Secondary Category: 
Classification of conflict (primary): 
Policy conflicts
Conflicts associated with political decisions, government or state policies regarding matters of public concern, such as debates concerning law reforms, electoral laws, and protests of the government’s political decisions, among others.
Classification of conflict(secondary):
Conflicts of socio-economic development
Conflicts associated with lack of, or gaps in economic development, opportunities and access to resources.