Ricky Gervais blasts ‘absolute filth’ Spanish festival

Ricky Gervais blasts ‘absolute filth’ Spanish festival where horses are wrestled to the ground, dragged around by the tail and have their manes hacked off in front of a cheering crowd

  • Spanish festival ‘Rapa das Bestas’ sees wild horses wrestled to the ground 
  • Ricky Gervais took to Twitter to call out the 400-year tradition as ‘absolute filth’
  • Practice of wrestling semi-feral horses traditionally seen as show of strength
  • Pamplona’s annual Running of the Bull festival is also mired in controversy 
  • 54 animal rights activists staged a protest in the city centre on eve of event

Pamplona’s annual Running of the Bull event was not the only Spanish festival attracting controversy this weekend. 

The ‘Rapa das Bestas,’ or the ‘Capture of the Beasts’ in Sabucedo saw hundreds of Spaniards wrestling wild horses to the ground, before hacking off their manes and tails as crowds cheered them on. 

British comedian Ricky Gervais took to Twitter to express his disgust at the event, calling it ‘absolute filth’. 

Pamplona’s annual Running of the Bull event was not the only Spanish festival attracting controversy this weekend (Pictured: Spaniards wrestle horses as part of ‘Rapa das Bestas’ festival) 

The 400-year-old Spanish tradition of wrestling the semi-feral horses to the ground is seen as a test of strength and determination

British comedian Ricky Gervais took to Twitter to express his disgust at the event, calling it ‘absolute filth’

Many were quick to agree with him, with one person writing: ‘We took a very very wrong turn in our evolution at some point. This is disgusting….’

‘Why does Spain love animal cruelty so much?’ another questioned. 

The 400-year-old Spanish tradition of wrestling the semi-feral horses to the ground is intended to be seen as a test of strength and determination.

Animal rights organisation People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) lists ‘Rapa das Bestas’ in its ’14 Worst ‘Festivals’ Still Taking Place Today’. 

Meanwhile in San Fermin, bulls have been sent charging through the streets for the third day of the nine-day Running of the Bull festival. 

Meanwhile in San Fermin, bulls have been sent charging through the streets for the third day of the nine-day Running of the Bull festival (Pictured: dozens run in the second running of the bulls) 

Each day, the animals are run every morning and killed in afternoon bullfights (Pictured: several runners are chased by bulls) 

Most revellers of the event party all day – and often all night – with many getting little sleep and sometimes none at all before watching the 8am encierros behind the safety of wooden barriers 

Each day, the animals are run every morning and killed in afternoon bullfights. 

Most revellers of the event party all day – and often all night – with many getting little sleep and sometimes none at all before watching the 8am encierros behind the safety of wooden barriers. 

Saturday’s opening erupted with controversy after animal rights campaigners flooded the arena of one of the first bull fight’s when a bull was speared to death. 

Footage of the incident was released by Peta UK, which posted a video on Twitter and wrote: ‘Activists leap into bullring in Pamplona to protest cruel, barbaric bullfights on the first day of San Fermin festival.’

On the eve of the festival, 54 activists set up a ‘crime scene’, lying down inside the outlines of bulls in Pamplona’s city centre, to draw attention to what they see as animal cruelty for the sake of human entertainment.

Five people were wounded on the opening day of the festival, while a woman was gored in the spine and four others sustained injuries on the second day. 

  

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