Dozens of animal rights protesters called for a permanent end of bullfighting and bull-running on Tuesday, the day that the first running of the bulls of the San Fermin festival would take place.
Pamplona’s running of the bulls festival was canceled in April due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The festival of San Fermín attracts hundreds of thousands of people every year who come to either watch or participate in the bull runs where specially-bred bulls chase runners through the narrow streets.
The animals are later tortured and killed in the evening bullfight. Animal rights activists say the practice is cruel, while supporters of bullfighting say it’s part of Spanish culture.
Activists from AnimaNaturalis and PETA, which organized the demonstration, say the 2020 version with no bulls, a result of the coronavirus pandemic, proves people can enjoy themselves in Pamplona without having animals suffer.
“The fiestas in Pamplona can be equally fun without having an animal that has to die or run through the streets so that we can have fun. Little by little, we are making people aware of this and people are advancing and rationalizing that nobody needs to suffer,” animal rights activist Josetxu Sagarra said.
The San Fermín festival is one of several bull-running fiestas held around Spain every year.