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Spanish protesters go naked to rally against bullfights

As the Spanish city of Bilbao prepares for bullfighting season, animal rights activists stripped naked in protest outside the city's iconic Guggenheim museum.

Activists hold a banner reading ''Abolish bullfighting'', as people cover their bodies with red and black during a protest

Basque animal rights activists believe bullfighting is immoral

Some hundred anti-bullfighting campaigners lay naked outside the Guggenheim museum on Saturday, August 21, to rally against the beginning of Bilbao's annual bullfighting festival.

Activists from several Spanish animal rights groups lay down arranged in the shape of a bull with their bodies painted black or red to represent the animal bleeding.

The protest, outside the Basque city's Guggenheim museum took place three weeks after the regional parliament in Catalonia took the historic decision of abolishing bullfighting from 2012.

Encouraged by Catalonia

Spanish bullfighter Leandro Marcos performs during a bullfight

The Basque region has a strong bullfighting tradition

One of the groups that participated, the Equanimal Foundation, said that the Catalan vote had encouraged it to "increase efforts to spread the abolishment across the whole country," including the Basque region. "A society with ethical concerns cannot allow the existence of deeply immoral spectacles like bullfighting," it said.

The Catalan move has been dismissed by some as a bid to distance the region, which has a popular separatist movement, from the rest of Spain. The Basque region also has a strong separatist movement, but arguably a stronger bullfighting tradition.

A poll in El Pais this month showed that 60 percent of Spaniards did not like bullfighting, although 57 percent opposed it being banned in Catalonia.

Author: Richard Connor (Reuters/AFP)

Editor: Toma Tasovac

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