Catalonia has become the first major region in Spain to outlaw bullfighting. The ban will take effect in 2012, making it illegal to partake in the centuries-old dance between bull and matador. Catalonia, with its capital Barcelona, has only one functioning bullring, and stages 15 fights a year out of a nationwide total of some 1,000, leaving some to argue that this was a political move by the region to stand out from the rest of Spain. But Joan Puigcercos, a lawmaker from a Catalan pro-independence party, the decision was about “the suffering of the animal. That is the question, nothing more.”
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