Bullfighting in Mexico, which includes the world’s largest bullfighting tracks, was banned for several days in an unprecedented and highly symbolic court decision that revived controversy over Mexico’s permanent ban on the tradition.
A federal judge is expected to rule on the merits in the coming days after he ruled on Friday in a lawsuit filed by the Justicia Justa association against bullfighting.
Meanwhile, the judge will hear arguments from supporters and opponents of this practice, which entered Mexico with Spanish colonization 500 years ago.
Until July 2, in the suburbs of Mexico City, in the arenas, each of which can accommodate fifty thousand spectators, not a single fight will be held.
The first “Pamplonade”, the launch of the bulls, similar to the San Fermin festival in Pamplona (Northern Spain), which takes place simultaneously, is scheduled to take place on July 2.
In recent years, a large number of associations have filed lawsuits to ban bullfighting, arguing that the law treats these animals as “things” and ignores the suffering they experience while fighting.
Advocates justify the practice on the grounds that it brings significant economic benefits, with official figures from 2018 showing that bullfighting generates $343 million and provides 80,000 direct jobs.
Five of Mexico’s 32 states have banned bullfighting. The Mexico State Congress (Parliament) is due to make a decision after the bill is passed at parliamentary committee level in December.
The discussion of bullfighting began in other countries of Latin America, where this activity is considered a tradition. Judges in Venezuela have recently banned bullfighting in two states, and legislation is being discussed to ban shows that abuse animals.
And in June 2020, the city of Bogota decided to ban the cruelty or death of animals during bullfighting.
In Peru, which has more arenas than football fields, the same year the Supreme Court overturned the ban.
Portugal, Spain and France allow bullfighting.