Spain is currently mourning after one of its famous bullfighters was gored during his bullfight at French festival: Aire-sur-l’Adour.
Ivan Fandino, who had won a fight earlier in the day and cut off one of the bull’s ears, was later on Saturday taken to hospital when he was gored in the ribs. Fandino died later that day after being punctured in the lungs by the bull’s horn.
Tributes were made by the Spanish royal family, the president Mariano Rajoy, and Valencian bullfighter, Enrique Ponce, who said: “Dear Ivan, “Torerazo” (super torero), I shall always remember you … those glorious afternoons. May God receive you in his glory.”
Bullfighting has been a controversial topic in Spain for many years. There are often protests against the practice, and in Madrid just last month there was a rally for banning it by animal protection campaigners.
In 2010 the Catalan government voted for a ban, but it was overturned in 2016 by Spain’s top court, justifying that it is a part of their culture and heritage.
There are still hundreds of bullfighting shows each year in country, and the sport still has a popular aura with many, who say it is an art integral to their culture. Alongside flamenco, bullfighting is one of Spain’s oldest traditions and is considered a “national heritage.”
For now, this tradition will remain dividing the country, and despite the animal rights workers’ set-back of the ban in Catalonia, they are still working towards having a bullfighting-free Spain.