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Animals Voice - Ban Bullfighting

Animal Voice, Ban Bullfighting Edition 2013

Irish Council Against Blood Sports (ICABS)
PO Box 88, Mullingar, Co Westmeath, Ireland

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In this edition...

01. Abbey Travel remove bullfighting from website
02. Low Cost remove bullfighting from website
03. Travel Department removes bullfight reference from Spain page
04. Sunways to stop advertising bullfighting
05. Budget Travel asked to stop encouraging visit to bullring
06. Club Travel telling tourists to "see a bullfight"
07. American Airlines asked to stop publicising bullfighting
08. Ask 365tickets to stop selling tickets to bullring
09. Hilton Hampton hotels tell holidaymakers: Watch a bullfight
10. Fodor's urged to stop directing tourists to bullfights
11. Register opposition to bullfighting with Spanish Embassy
12. Irish MEPs urged to act against bullfight subsidies
13. Boy gored to death at Spanish bullrun
14. Most Spaniards against public funds for bullfighting
15. Dutch Parliament against bullfight subsidies
16. Petitions against bullfighting
17. New book presents arguments against bullfighting
18. Campaign Quotes


Please join an anti-coursing demonstration this Thursday, August 1st
2013, from 1-2pm, outside the Department of Arts and Heritage, 23
Kildare Street, Dublin. Be there to support calls on Minister Jimmy
Deenihan to refuse a licence for a 2013-14 hare coursing season. Email
"Minister Deenihan - No more hare coursing licences" to Tel: 01 631 3804 / 068-57446

An anti-bullfighting protest outside the Spanish Embassy in Dublin is
planned for Wednesday, 4th September, 2013 at 12 midday. More details to


01. Abbey Travel remove bullfighting from website

A big thank you to Abbey Travel for removing references to bullfighting
from their website. A company spokesperson agreed that bullfighting is
cruel and that the inclusion of the bullfighting references was a
complete oversight.

An Abbey statement outlined that "up until recently, there was no
mention of bull fighting on our website" but that after a re-launch of
the site, some third party content which mentioned bullfighting was
inadvertently used.

"We do not agree with promoting bullfighting," the spokesperson added.
"All references have been removed."

Thank you, Abbey Travel!

Abbey Travel is celebrating 35 years in business on Dublin's Middle
Abbey Street. Find out more about the company at


02. Low Cost remove bullfighting from website

ICABS has thanked Low Cost - Europe’s leading independent
hotel provider - for removing references to bullfighting and bullrunning
from its website.

The move came after we highlighted the cruelty involved and the upset
caused to holidaymakers who witness the bloody violence.

A big thank you to for this compassionate move.


03. Travel Department removes bullfight reference from Spain page

Thumbs up to the Travel Department for responding to an ICABS appeal and
removing a reference to bullfighting from the Spain page of its website.

The Travel Department is one of Europe's leading escorted holiday
companies. Find out more about their tours at


04. Sunways to stop advertising bullfighting

Sunways Holidays has been thanked for removing references to
bullfighting and bullrunning from its website.

In an appeal to the Dun Laoghaire-based company, ICABS called for an
optional visit to a bullfight to be removed from its Moorish Spain trip

A spokesperson stated in response that although they do not directly
operate the tour in question, they had "made a decision to discontinue
advertising this particular event from this itinerary and tour".

ICABS is grateful to Sunway Holidays for its positive response.


05. Budget Travel asked to stop encouraging visit to bullring

Budget Travel is being asked to stop encouraging holidaymakers to attend
bullfights and bullruns. On its website, the Dublin-based company lists
"bull fights" as a holiday attraction.

On a Costa del Sol web page, Budget Travel describes a bullring as a
"cultural attraction" - "Go to Malaga to visit some of the astonishing
cultural attractions like The Picasso Museum or the bull ring. It’s a
gorgeous way to get a glimpse of Spain’s roots and heritage."

Elsewhere, Budget recommends a visit to the infamous Pamplona bullrun
where bulls are chased through the streets and later tortured and killed
in the local bullring - "Be part of the legendary Running of the Bulls
on our 7 day Pamplona experience in the exciting opening
week...Highlights: Dress up in traditional red and white and run like a
local in the Running of the Bulls, Watch the bulls run from the Plaza de
Toros (bull ring)...What's included: Guided walking tour of Pamplona –
See...the famous bullring."

ICABS has told Budget Travel about the cruelty of bullfighting and the
fact that most tourists lured in to bullrings by holiday operators are
left shocked and disgusted at bloody violence they witness. Also
highlighted was the suffering caused to bulls used in the Pamplona
bullrun and the torture and death that awaits them in the local bullring.


Contact Budget Travel and urge them to stop encouraging holiday makers
to attend bullfights and bullruns.

Budget Travel
29 Lower Abbey Street
Dublin 1
Tel: 01 435 0024
Tweet: @BudgetTravelIRL


06. Club Travel telling tourists to "see a bullfight"

Please join us in our appeal to Club Travel to stop telling tourists to
"see a bullfight".

"To watch the greatest bullfighters show in Spain's capital is a
memorable experience and by booking cheap Madrid flights from Ireland
you are one step closer to this adventure," the Dublin company states on
its Madrid page.


Please appeal to Club Travel to stop suggesting that holidaymakers
attend bullfights.

Club Travel
30 Lower Abbey Street
Dublin 1

Tel: 01 500 5586
Twitter: @clubtravelie


07. American Airlines asked to stop publicising bullfighting

ICABS is calling on American Airlines to stop presenting details about
bullfighting on its website. The company is publicising bullfights in
Madrid, Seville and Lima and even providing a link to a site where
tickets can be purchased.

In the events section of the American Airlines Lima page, an
"all-important" bullfight festival is featured along with a phone number
and website address for the ticket agent.

"The most famous matadors and bull ranches in the world compete for fame
and glory in the Acho Plaza de Toros, a bullfighting arena erected in
1766 and rebuilt in 1945," the event description outlines. "The Feria
Taurina del Senor de los Milagros is one of the key bullfighting events
in Latin America."

Acknowleding the cruelty of bullfighting, a warning is given to those
who "find the practice of bullfighting unpleasant": "We suggest you
steer well clear."

More bullfighting content appears on the airline's Seville page -
"Flying To Seville With American Airlines? Seville conjures up images of
raven-haired flamenco dancers, bullfights and extravagant Mudejar
architecture...The Sevillians' passion for bullfighting is visible on a
tour of the Real Maestranza bullring and its onsite museum, which houses
paintings and embellished matador costumes."

The city's Feria de San Miguel is also featured on the page. One of the
highlights of the festival is listed as "bullfights".

For those flying with American Airlines to Madrid, information about the
city's "premier" bullring is presented, including address, phone number
and bullfight dates.

The entry for Madrid goes on to outline that "while many may be against
the taunting of animals for sport, bullfighting is associated with a
sense of Spanishness, deeply rooted within the national identity."


Contact American Airlines and urge them to remove all references to
bullfighting from their website.

Mr Tom Horton
CEO, American Airlines
P.O. Box 619612 MD 2400
DFW Airport, TX 75261-9612

Email Via:
Tel: 817.786.3778
Twitter: @americanair


08. Ask 365tickets to stop selling tickets to bullring

Join us in our appeal to 365tickets Ireland to stop selling tickets for
a tour of a Madrid bullring - an animal cruelty hellhole which is
described on their website as "the international centre of bullfighting".

Alongside a shocking image of a bleeding, injured bull, the 365tickets
website description of the bullring tour states: "On your visit with Las
Ventas Tour you will discover a place which is emblematic of the heart
and soul of bullfighting, where the world’s finest matadors present
their artistry and skill...The tours to Las Ventas bullring allow the
visitors to discover in their own language, not only the bullring
itself, but also the basics of bullfighting."

The site is offering full-price tickets for adults, reduced-rate tickets
for children and free tickets for infants up to five years of age.


Contact 365tickets now and urge them to stop selling tickets to an
animal cruelty black spot.

6 New Street
St Helier
Jersey JE2 3RA
Channel Islands

Tel: 0901 8100365 (UK)
Tel: +44 1534 739663 (Rest of world)

Twitter: @365tickets


09. Hilton Hampton hotels tell holidaymakers: Watch a bullfight

Hilton Hampton hotels in Mexico are suggesting that visitors go "watch a
bullfight". The company's website states: "watch a bullfight at Plaza de
Toros Nuevo Progreso" and "watch a bullfight at the Reynosa Bullring".


Please contact Hilton and ask them to stop encouraging tourists to
attend bullfights.

Hilton Worldwide Headquarters
7930 Jones Branch Drive
McLean, Virginia 22102, USA
Tel: +1 703 883 1000
Twitter: @HiltonWorldwide @Hampton


10. Fodor's urged to stop directing tourists to bullfights

Travel guide publisher, Fodor's, has been asked to stop directing
tourists to bullfights. On its website, the company suggests attending a
bullfight, saying that "Spanish toreros delight the crowds". It also
presents details of where tickets can be purchased.

Fodor's is not only shamefully recommending a visit to a bullfight but
also suggesting that tourists should tip the ushers working at
bullrings. In the 2013 edition of its Spain travel guide, it states
"tour guides should be tipped about 2 euro, ushers at bullfights 15 to
20 cents".

Fodor's has been reminded that bullfighting is a horrendous activity
which results in enormous suffering for bulls and horses and that the
activity is opposed by millions of people across the world, including a
majority in Spain, Portugal, etc.

In a complaint to Fodors, the Irish Council Against Blood Sports stated:
"We believe it is inappropriate for a travel guide company to encourage
tourists to visit a bullfight because many tourists who visit a bullring
out of curiosity come away disgusted and upset at what they witness. It
effectively casts a dark shadow across their whole holiday experience."


Sign and Share the Petition:

Email a complaint to

Leave a comment on Fodors' Facebook Page
Tweet a complaint to @fodorstravel


11. Register opposition to bullfighting with Spanish Embassy

If you choose to holiday in a bullfighting country (Spain, France,
Portugal, Mexico, Peru, Venezuela), please do not visit bullfighting
arenas or museums. Avoid purchasing any bullfight-related souvenirs.
Join the international campaign against bullfighting. Please register
your opposition to this horrific blood sport with the governments and
political representatives of bullfighting countries as well as to the
local Ambassadors.


Contact the Spanish Ambassador to Ireland to register your opposition to
bullfighting. Express your desire to see bullfighting banned throughout
all of Spain.

The Spanish Ambassador to Ireland
Embassy of Spain
17A Merlyn Park, Dublin 4.

Tel 1: +353 (0)1 2691640
Tel 2: +353 (0)1 2692597
Fax: +353 (0)1 269 1854


12. Irish MEPs urged to act against bullfight subsidies

ICABS has contacted all of Ireland's MEPs to urge them to act against
the EU's subsidisation of bullfighting.

A report published earlier this year estimates that every year, "no less
than Eur 129 million" from the Common Agricultural Policy makes its way
into the bullfighting industry. The report highlights that without this
money, and around Eur 571 million from the Spanish Government,
bullfighting "would probably be on the brink of financial collapse and
unable to subsist".

Read the full Toros and Taxes report at


13. Boy gored to death at Spanish bullrun

Source: Sky News

A 16-year-old boy has been gored to death at a running-of-the-bulls
festival celebrating the patron saint of a Spanish town, police say.

The animal caught the teenager in the back as he took part in the event
marking the Apostle James feast at Isso, around 200 miles southeast of
Madrid. He underwent two failed operations to repair massive injuries to
his liver, but doctors were unable to save him and he died hours later.

A 60-year-old man taking part in the festivities was also injured, when
he was gored in a leg.

Fiestas including bulls are common in Spain, and critics and aficionados
alike often agree that health and safety measures are almost
non-existent at many small town bull runs. That means almost anyone can
participate, even if they are drunk or unfit.

The police spokesman who revealed the news did so on condition of
anonymity because he is not allowed to be cited by name.


14. Most Spaniards against public funds for bullfighting

Source: Humane Society International

As the Spanish Parliament debates a proposed new law to declare
bullfighting a cultural heritage, an Ipsos MORI public opinion poll
commissioned by Humane Society International reveals that the majority
of Spaniards do not approve of public funds being used for the
bloodsport and that three quarters of the population haven’t attended a
bullfight in the last five years. Only 29 percent of Spanish people
support bullfighting, according to poll results.

A legislative proposal supported by bullfighting enthusiasts to protect
and promote bullfighting nationwide is being debated by the Culture
Committee before being voted on by the Senate and then the Congress. If
passed, public money could be used to fund and promote this bloody
spectacle in which bulls are tormented and stabbed repeatedly until
death in a bullfighting ring.

"Bullfighting is a cruel and outdated spectacle that has no place in
modern Spain," said Kitty Block, vice president of Humane Society
International. "Clearly, the poll shows the vast majority of Spanish
people don’t support cruelty to bulls and don’t want to see public funds
poured into this appalling bloodsport. Humane Society International
urges Spain’s politicians to reject the proposed law, which is a cynical
attempt to procure taxpayers’ money to breathe life back into a dying
industry. Let’s celebrate Spain’s artistic, cultural and architectural
heritage without cruelty and relegate to the history books the torturing
of bulls for entertainment."

Figures released recently by the Culture Ministry show that bullfight
attendance is at an all-time low. From 2007 – 2011 bullfights in Spain
declined from 3,650 a year to just 2,290 with only a fraction (590)
involving top-ranking matadors against adult bulls. Figures are likely
to have dropped even further during 2012 following the recession and the
introduction of an outright ban on bullfighting in neighbouring Catalonia.


- Seventy-six percent oppose use of public funds to support the
bullfighting industry
- Only 29 percent of the population support bullfighting (just 13
percent support it "strongly")
- Seventy-five percent of respondents said they hadn’t attended a
bullfight in the last five years
- Seven percent of respondents said they attended a bullfight "about
once a year, compared with 20 percent who said they visited a museum/art
exhibition; 19 percent who made theatre visits; and 12 percent who
attended football matches
- Sixty-seven percent agree that children under 16 should not be allowed
to attend bullfights

Bullfighting is already banned in many countries including Argentina,
Canada, Cuba, Denmark, Italy and the United Kingdom. However, events
still take place in Spain, France, Portugal, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru,
Ecuador and Mexico. Some Spanish cities, such as Calonge, Tossa de Mar,
Vilamacolum and La Vajol, as well as the region of Catalonia, have
outlawed bullfighting.

Every year, many thousands of bulls suffer a slow and agonising death in
Spanish bullfights. Bulls are routinely subjected to prolonged pain.
First the picadors (men on horseback) pierce the bull’s neck with a
barbed lance. Then a matador repeatedly stabs the animal with
banderillas (spears) before a sword is driven between the bull’s
shoulders. In most cases, this injures the bull’s lungs and bronchial
tubes, causing blood to flow and bubble through the animal’s mouth and
nose before death finally comes.


15. Dutch Parliament against bullfight subsidies

Source: League Against Cruel Sports

On the 4th July the Dutch Parliament unanimously adopted a resolution
against EU subsidies that support the Spanish bullfighting industry

Initiated by the Dutch Party for Animals, this move sends a timely
signal towards the Spanish Parliament, which is currently debating
whether to award bullfighting the status of intangible cultural heritage.

On July 10 and 11th, a hearing took place in the Spanish Parliament. A
vote will now likely be set for early September. If Spain vote to grant
bullfighting Intangible Cultural Heritage status, this would mean more
public funding for the bullfighting industry and the promotion of
bullfighting to young children. Furthermore, it would threaten the
regional bans on bullfighting in Catalonia and in the Canary Islands.

In a report issued earlier this year, it was estimated that the Spanish
bullfighting industry receive approximately 130 million euro annually
from EU tax payers via subsidies under the EU's Common Agricultural
Policy. With the unanimous adoption of the resolution, the Dutch
Parliament takes a firm stance against such public funding in support of
this cruel and outdated entertainment.


16. Petitions against bullfighting

Travel Companies: Stop encouraging holidaymakers to visit bullfights
Sign Now -

Say NO to Spanish Government proposal to protect and promote bullfighting

Stop the EU funding bullfighting

End EU funding for bullfighting

Fodor's Travel Guides: Stop directing tourists to bullrings

Say NO to the cruel Toro de Fuego ("bull on fire") event in Spain

Please download, sign and collect signatures for ADDA's important
petition which calls on the Spanish Government to scrap plans to
consider declaring bullfighting as intangible cultural heritage. Send
signed petitions to ADDA, c/ Bailen, 164 bajos, 08037 Barcelona, Spain.
Download the Petition -
- and find out more at


17. New book presents arguments against bullfighting

Tauromaquia, el mal cultural ("Bullfighting: the Cultural Evil") is a
rigorous and well-supported argument against bullfighting festivals
written by Carmen Mendez, president of the Spanish animal welfare
organisation ADDA (Asociacion para la Defensa de los Derechos del Animal).

"To understand the present it is necessary to look at the past," Mendez
writes. That is why, after compiling and classifying copious documents,
the author provides a clear and comprehensive historical account of the
subject from the Roman circus right up to the most recent events. The
book exposes the scandalous way in which this private business is
subsidised by public money, the myths associated with bulls, and the
many falsehoods that are perpetuated in order to justify the
continuation of an anachronistic and degrading activity.

Exploring the ideas and experiences of an interesting selection of
erudite and distinguished personalities from the past, readers will find
a rich legacy of thought, reasoning and arguments against bullfighting.
The authoritative information, much of it relatively unknown, offers new
perspectives and allows readers to come to their own conclusions.

The book can be ordered at


18. Campaign Quotes

"I have always found bullfighting boring and revolting." Miguel de
Unamuno - Spanish essayist, novelist, poet, playwright and philosopher

Bullfighting is one of the most cruel forms of animal abuse. Every year,
more than 250,000 bulls and cows are tortured and killed worldwide
during bullfights and similar events. Also during fiestas ('village
festivals'), tens of thousands of bulls and other animals are severely
maltreated. More information about bullfighting and fiestas at
From the CAS International website.

Spain’s attempts to give bull-fighting ‘special cultural status’ is a
disastrous move for the Spanish economy, Spanish tourist industry and
animal welfare, say Care for the Wild. Philip Mansbridge, CEO of
wildlife charity Care for the Wild International, said: "This is a
horrendously misjudged backwards step. Inside Spain there might be a
feeling among some people that bullfighting is part of the culture, but
outside Spain, the rest of the world is looking on and wondering how
such an appalling, cruel spectacle can be allowed to continue. The
Spanish economy is in dire straits, so tourism is vital to the nation.
But we know through our work on animals in tourism that people are
already saying that they won’t go to a country that supports this kind
of animal abuse." from, 13th Feb 2013

I have read about the horrors of the Pamplona running and bullfighting
and the tremendous suffering that is endured by each bull involved in
these events. It is extremely upsetting and no animal should have to
experience this cruelty, especially in the name of so-called
entertainment...I believe that bullfighting flies in the face of EU
commitments on animal welfare. Keith Taylor MEP, Green Party (UK)

Bullfighting is heavily subsidized both by funds from the Spanish
administrations and by European funds. Without such backing, this
recreational activity would probably be on the brink of financial
collapse and unable to subsist. We reckon that no less than 571€ million
are spent annually by different tiers of Spanish authorities, and no
less than 129·6€ million by the European Union – in this case, basically
through Common Agricultural Policy programs. Both these amounts are
minimum sums, derived from conservative assessments. From Toros and
Taxes. Read the report at

"Younger Spaniards are showing little interest in the 'sport' while the
downturn in the Spanish economy has made many once loyal fans turn their
back on the bullring." RTE Radio 1's World Report programme, 23 June
2013. Listen to the report now at (Preview)
Play (Show link)
Bullfighting is in Crisis
World Report RTE Radio 1 23 June 2013
(Show link)
The League Against Cruel Sports today releases a new anti-bullfighting
campaign film which seeks to expose the distressing reality of bull
fighting...The annual, nine day San Fermin Fiesta, more commonly known
as the Pamplona Bull Run, starts Saturday 6th July, and whilst the
general public think of it as simply ‘the running of the bulls’, in
reality the bulls run to their death, to face a matador in the bull
ring. Watch the League's video at


Please make a donation to ICABS

If you like our work, please consider making a donation. The Irish
Council Against Blood Sports relies entirely on your generosity to
continue our campaigning for an end to blood sport cruelty. Please
become a supporter of our work today - click on the Paypal button at to make a donation or send a cheque made payable
to ICABS to ICABS, PO Box 88, Mullingar, Co Westmeath, Ireland. Thank
you very much.


Top ways you can help the campaign

• Join our email list (and encourage friends to join) and respond to our
Action Alerts. Email "Subscribe" to
• Become a campaign supporter and make a donation to help fund our
efforts. Click on "Join ICABS" at for more
• Contact your local politicians and ask them to support a ban on blood
sports. Click on "Politicians" at for contact
details and a sample letter.
• Join the campaign on Facebook, Twitter and Youtube -,,
• Sign up for our free text alert service and receive occasional
campaign updates to your phone. To subscribe to this free service,
simply text the word GO to our textline on 00 353 86 038 6617.
• Link to our website and display one of our banners. Click on "Links"
at for linking options.
• Monitor blood sports meetings in your area and provide us with photos,
video and reports.
• Write a letter to your local newspaper about the cruelty of blood sports
• Sign and collect signatures for our petitions. Click on "Petitions" at for online and printable petitions.
• Organise a fund-raiser to help raise funds for the campaign
• Set up an online anti-blood sports group (Facebook, Myspace, Bebo,
etc) to cover your area.
• Download, print and display our posters and leaflets - click on
"Leaflets" at now.
• Set up an information stand at your school/library/youth group/adult
group, etc
• Introduce your friends to our website and encourage them to get
• Simply keeping your ear to the ground. Email ICABS about any
blood-sport related incidents in your area.


Tune in to the ICABS Channel

Footage of bullfighting cruelty can be viewed on the ICABS Channel on
Youtube - or by clicking on "Videos" at Please send video links to travel companies
promoting bullfighting.

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