The Pero Palo Festival In Villanueva de la Vera, Spain
Every year, a terrified donkey is violently forced through the streets of the village of Villanueva de la Vera in Spain, surrounded by drunk, rowdy, young men. The men think it is great fun to beat, kick, bite, shove, drag and crush the terrified donkey, as they all laugh as it is done. The animal regularly collapses from exhaustion and fright, only to be forced back to its feet by violence from the mob of drunken men. Guns are fired close to the panicked animal, alcohol is forced down it’s throat and it is ridden by the heaviest men in the village.
The ordeal often leaves the donkey badly injured or crushed to death. After this mental and physical torture has finally ended, the shattered and traumatised donkey is forced in to a trailer and taken away to meet an unknown fate.
Animal charity campaigners, who work at the only donkey sanctuary in Spain, were refused when they asked if their vet could check the donkey over after the festival. A member of the charity, Jose Rodriguez Gil, said “When I tried to film the donkey I was repeatedly threatened. They knew very well that what they were doing was cruel.”
Another donkey sanctuary worker commented about how he had been punched, kicked and spat on by the crowd during his attempts to protect the Villanueva donkeys.
A spokesman for Villanueva de la Vera and the region’s tourism department said: “We will not bow to pressure from animal welfare activists. This is our tradition and that will continue.”
Image: A terrified donkey is abused by a violent mob of drunk men in the name of tradition in Villanueva, Spain, in The Pero Palo Festival every year. The traumatised and exhausted donkey is taken away afterwards to meet its unknown fate. Source
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