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A historic start of the year for the Venezuelan city of San Cristóbal! For the first time in 56 years, no bullfights will take place during the annual city festival Feria Internacional de San Sebastián. This city festival usually takes place in January and is the most important one in the state of Táchira. Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 it has been canceled, although a part of the festival will be kept online.
In December, the bullfighting company Miura announced that it had been allowed to use the bullring before the end of January and that it would employ some national bullfighters for the bullfights. But everything was suddenly denied when the municipal and regional authorities reacted against this announcement.
First, the health authorities of the state of Táchira responded, who advised canceling all festivals and public events due to the outbreak of COVID-19. Later, the San Cristóbal town hall responded: all public events were canceled. The government of the state of Táchira also announced that it would take measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus: one of these was the cancellation of all events.
Even the bullfighters' guild criticized Miura, but for completely different reasons: they considered the five thousand dollars the company offered as a salary for their services an insult. The managers of the bullring denied that bullfights were planned or that there were any plans to organize them.
Parts of the city festival will take place online, but this time without bullfights. Venezuela is one of the bullfighting countries where the end of bullfighting is very near, thanks to years of campaigns to end these cruel events. In 2017, bullfights in Maracaibo were banned. Furthermore, the economic situation in the country also means that in the few places where bullfights are held, there is even less public. Even before COVID-19, various breeders of fighting bulls were on the brink of bankruptcy. In 2019, only seven bullfights were held in Venezuela. The coronavirus will only further worsen the situation for the bullfighting sector in Venezuela. And in the meantime, we, together with our sister organizations, will continue our fight for a ban on bullfighting in places where it is still allowed.
Source: AnimaNaturalis Venezuela