The police say about 3,000 people took part in Monday's demonstration in Madrid. / sur

Spanish hauliers call off their indefinite strike after just one day

The organisers accuse trade unions, road transport associations and some of the media and politicians of harassment and discrediting the protest action

EDURNE MARTÍNEZ MADRID.

The indefinite strike called by the National Platform in Defence of Transport on Monday has been suspended after just one day. The action did not receive as much support as the organisers expected and roads and logistics centres have been operating completely normally.

However, the Platform says this was due to a campaign of harrassment by other haulier associations, unions and some of the media and politicians, who were “deliberately attempting to discredit all the actions” it had planned.

The Minister for Transport, Raquel Sánchez, responded as soon as she heard the news, and said the government would continue to work on improving conditions for road transport companies. She thanked the sector for its responsible behaviour, saying that this is essential for the economy. “We all have to row together to overcome the difficulties,” she posted on her Twitter account.

"Disproportionate threats"

The police say about 3,000 people took part in Monday’s demonstration in Madrid. In a statement issued to the media at 1.30pm on Tuesday, the organisers said they had received “thousands of calls” from colleagues complaining of disproportionate threats warning them not to support the strike.

It said it could not expose its supporters to this type of situation, but would continue to “defend and fight for” their interests.

The biggest transport associations had already come to an agreement with the government. For example, sources at Fenadismer (National Federation of Transport Associations of Spain) said this was not the time to strike and it wanted to continue negotiating more help for the sector with the government.

Also Astic (International Road Transport Association) said it “totally” rejected the strike because “there is no reason for such a radical measure” which would damage everyone, in the sector and outside. It said the legislative changes which have been introduced in recent years “are heading in the right direction”.