Barcelona votes to ban bullfighting
6 April 2004
BARCELONA – Barcelona has voted to ban bullfighting, the first move of its kind in Spain.
Nearly 250,000 people signed a petition calling for abolition in Catalonia, of which Barcelona is the capital, after a long campaign by animal rights activists.
The regional government must now approve the ban, for it to become law.
Supporters of the sport, regarded by many as a national pastime, have threatened to take to the streets in protest.
In a secret ballot, 21 councillors voted in favour, 15 against, with two abstentions.
The motion states: Barcelona is an anti-bullfighting city.
The vote reflects a feeling that bullfighting is incompatible with Barcelona’s image of a city famous for art and architecture.
The aim also expresses a Catalan desire to forge an identity separate from Madrid.
The vote has enraged fans of the sport.
Apart from Madrid and Seville, no other city stages more bullfights.
About 100 bulls are killed each year in bullfights in Barcelona’s only working bull ring, La Monumental, watched mainly by curious tourists.
However, a city council spokesman said there has not been a large bullfighting following in the region since the 1960s.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news