Animal Protection > Worldwide Actions > Portugal
Meeting of the Portuguese Movement for the Abolition of Bullfighting with the Prime Minister
11 May 2012
Last Tuesday, May 8th, the Portuguese movement for the abolition of bullfighting lived an historic moment when it was received by the Portuguese Prime-Minister at the headquarters of the Portuguese Government, the Palace of S. Bento.
The movement for the abolition of bullfighting was the clear winner in an unprecedented initiative promoted by the Portuguese Government since the beginning of the year to ascertain which is the most popular cause in the country. The winner would be received by the Head of the Government, Mr. Passos Coelho, and, in this case, plus the Secretary of State for Culture, Mr. Francisco Jose Viegas.
For the very first time the clear will of the great majority of the Portuguese society to definitely abolish these cruel events was heard by the Portuguese political power at the highest level. And in the end it became clear that this initiative will not end here as the abolitionists accepted the openness of the Government for them to become a party in the ongoing revision of the Bullfighting Regulation, which only serves the interests of the bullfighting industry, providing no protection to children, nor does it take into account the EU rules for Animal welfare ratified by Portugal.
The three representatives of the abolitionist movement made it a point to clearly inform the Prime-minister of Portugal about the other side of bullfighting. Namely by demystifying the false idea that Portuguese bullfighting is less cruel than its Spanish version. The abolitionists explained to the Head of the Portuguese Government that bullfighting in Portugal is among the most cruel events in the world since after the bull is run in the arena, and after the bandarillas are taken out with the help of a sharp knife, the animals have to wait for several days, alive, in a condition of intense suffering, until they are finally slaughtered at the slaughter house on Monday. It is a most regrettable and unacceptable situation in our days and which many are unaware of. The abolitionists also stressed other exceptions this industry enjoys from, and which are totally unacceptable.
This meeting with the Prime-minister marks the beginning of a new age for Portugal, towards the abolishment of these cruel events, which in the 19th Century were already considered as "inappropriate for a civilized nation" and were actually forbidden during the reign of Queen Mary the Pious.
The Portuguese society, as the societies in other countries where bullfighting is still going on, is advancing and wants bullfighting to be abolished. The time has come to say IT'S ENOUGH! And, while wanting to respect its lovers, finally the will of the great majority of the Portuguese people needs to be heard.
This movement, which began with this initiative launched last
January by the Portuguese Government, will go on by materializing the
will of the majority of the Portuguese society until the abolishment of
bullfighting becomes a true reality in Portugal.