Appeal to President Obama: Run Screaming From Pamplona Bullfights!

PETA Wants to Ensure President's Trip to Spain Excludes Bull Run Festival After Which the Bulls Are Tormented and Killed

For Immediate Release:
June 22, 2016

David Perle 202-483-7382

Pamplona, Spain – As President Barack Obama prepares to visit Spain in July, PETA and Spanish group AnimaNaturalis are sending him a strong message: Skip San Fermín, Pamplona’s “Running of the Bulls.”

In a letter sent to President Obama this morning, PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—points out that each of the bulls who is chased down the narrow streets of Pamplona, slipping and sliding, crashing into walls, and breaking bones, will be tortured and killed in the town’s bullring shortly afterward. According to media reports, a White House spokesperson hinted that the president “is interested in going to San Fermín.”

“When compassionate people in Spain are working to end torturous and archaic bullfights and bull runs, influential tourists must stay miles away from any hint of support for this cruelty,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “A Nobel Peace Prize winner like President Obama should not be associated with such violence in any way.”

In a typical bullfight, as many as eight men taunt, beat, and stab a single bull with daggers and harpoon-like banderillas until he becomes weakened from blood loss. Then the matador pierces the exhausted animal with a sword, and an executioner cuts his spinal cord. Many bulls are paralyzed but still conscious as they are chained and dragged out of the arena.

According to a recent Ipsos MORI survey, 81 percent of Spanish people have no interest in bullfights. More than 100 towns and cities across Spain—as well as the entire region of Catalonia—have introduced bans on bullfighting events.

PETA’s letter to President Obama is available upon request. For more information, please visit

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind