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Mexico's Sinaloa state bans bullfighting


The Congress of Sinaloa in western Mexico has unanimously voted to ban bullfighting in the state, classifying it as animal cruelty.

Sinaloa is now the fifth state to ban bullfighting after Sonora, Guerrero, Coahuila and Quintana Roo. The ban will see an end to the annual bullfights in Mazatlán city, the only town in Sinaloa still holding bullfights. Bullfighting still takes place in 27 states, resulting in the killing of thousands of bulls each year despite considerable public opposition. A 2013 survey by leading Mexican polling agency Parametria found 73% of Mexicans wanted a nationwide ban on bullfighting. “If it only depended on public opinion, bullfighting in Mexico would be banned,” the study concluded.

“This is an important reform in Mexico because it reflects the views and sentiments of the majority of Mexican citizens who believe bullfighting should be banned. We cannot hope to tackle violence in our society if we still allow animals to be stabbed to death for our entertainment,” says Felipe Marquez, animal cruelty program manager for Human Society International/Mexico.

The Congress expanded the scope of the Animal Welfare Law, the Environmental Law for Sustainable Development as well as the Penal Code, to include a ban on bullfighting and to better protect wild animals. Anyone found guilty of animal cruelty can now face fines of US$1,000 and up to six years in prison for acts of animal cruelty.

Worldwide, some 250,000 bulls are killed each year in bullfights. It is still legal in Spain, France, Portugal, Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Ecuador.

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