By Daniel Hunter

Some of Paris' major roads have been blocked by taxi drivers who are protesting over the controversial taxi-booking app Uber.

The protests come as the French government confirmed it would ban UberPop, an Uber carpool subsidiary, from 1 January 2015.

Although it is described as a carpooling service, UberPop's critics have said it is essentially a taxi-booking service and continue to call for Uber and all of its operations to be banned.

Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet told French TV that "it [is] illegal to offer this service but additionally for the consumer there is a real danger."

The president of the union Taxi de France, Ibrahim Sylla, said: "Come out in mass to defend our work, it's an important moment."

Global issue

Similar protests have taken place in major cities around the world, with taxi drivers unhappy about the app. Uber sympathisers say taxi drivers are worried about competition, but taxi drivers claim that Uber isn't regulated in the same way that traditional taxis are.

Earlier on Monday, a regional transport authority in Belgium said it would support a legal challenge against Uber taken by a taxi firm.

Last week, Uber was banned in Spain after a judge called it "unfair competition".

The service has also been banned in the Indian capital, Delhi.

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