21 Nov, 2023 @ 13:45
1 min read

Bullfighting ‘is sadistic and despicable’, says Spain’s new culture minister – but can animal activists get their hopes up?

Bullfighting sadistic and despicable, says Spain’s new culture minister but can animal activists get their hopes up
Bullfighting sadistic and despicable, says Spain’s new culture minister but can animal activists get their hopes up

A POLITICIAN who is an avowed anti-bullfighter has become Spain’s Minister of Culture in Pedro Sanchez’s new cabinet announced on Monday.

Ernest Urtasan, 41, is one of five people from the left-wing Sumar group that have been given ministerial portfolios.

His stance on bullfighting is in contrast to the official policy of the PSOE socialists who are the majority partner in the new government coalition.

As an MEP, Urtasan was the promoter in 2016 of a declaration rejecting the Constitutional Court’s decision to annul the ban on bullfighting in Catalunya.

The motion, supported by 37 MEPs, described bullfighting as an ‘unfair, sadistic and despicable’.

Urtasan’s position is different to that of the PSOE, which together with the PP and Vox, rejected a proposal by the left-wing Podemos party against government support for bullfighting.

The socialist Maribel Garcia said in Congress at the time that bullfighting is more than a festival, considering it a ‘productive sector, an example of sustainability’ and a ‘cultural manifestation’.

Bull rancher Victorino Martin from the Todi de Lidia Foundation said: “His personal views should not interfere in the sector as a cultural asset of Spain.”

“His duty now is to govern for all Spaniards and watch over all the cultural expressions of the country,” he added.

Urtasan has other issues to look at including the Film Law, the Patronage Law, and the new Cultural Rights Law.

His administration will also be focused on maintaining the cultural bonus and strengthening freedom of expression in the cultural sector, following a pre-investiture pact agreed between PSOE and Sumar.

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