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Thousands call for ban on rodeos in Chile

Saturday, September 03, 2016 - 01:09

Animal rights activists march through the streets of Santiago, denouncing the country's national sport as cruel and backwards. Diane Hodges reports.

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Thousands of animal rights activists marched through the streets of Chile's capital calling for a ban on rodeos. They say the Chilean style of rodeo condones the mistreatment of animals as entertainment, according to veterinarian Pablo Reyes. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) PABLO REYES, VETERINARIAN, SAYING: "The rodeo may be traditional, but it uses animals for sadistic entertainment-- mistreating them, hitting them, hurting them." However, the protesters are fighting an uphill battle. Rodeos have been considered a national sport in Chile since 1962. But activists say the Chilean practice of using horses to ram into the cows is cruel. They've organized a series of protests to stop it, according to Mauricio Serrano of the group, Animal Libre. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MAURICIO SERRANO, PRESIDENT OF ANIMAL LIBRE (FREE ANIMAL) ONG, SAYING: "This massive protest is being replicated in nine other regions of our country in order to end this in different districts and eventually on a national level." The protests were timed for the start of the traditional competition season, which begins in mid-September.

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Thousands call for ban on rodeos in Chile

Saturday, September 03, 2016 - 01:09