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In recent days the news that bullfighting has been banned in Mexico City has been circulating on social media (and some mainstream media too), but this has been incorrect reporting — in part from inaccurate translations. Unfortunately, bullfighting has not been banned in Mexico City. It has only been temporarily suspended by a Judge while the courts look at a complaint claiming that the laws that regulate it are unconstitutional. After the court proceedings end, if the judge considers that such laws are not unconstitutional, bullfighting will resume in the capital (unless the Mexican City Congress bans it before the end of such proceedings). 

Initially, the judge only suspended it “provisionally” but in early June he decided that it will be suspended indefinitely while the proceedings still take place. That is what the recent news is. Not that it is banned or suspended forever, but that the suspension will last the length of the proceedings. It seems that some media has wrongly translated “indefinitely” with “permanently” (as in the case of the French newspaper Le Monde), and some have erroneously translated “suspension” for a “ban”.

It all started with the complaint issued by the group Justicia Justa (complaint number 910/2022) regarding the laws that currently regulate bullfighting. The first news on this issue was in May when district Judge Jonathan Bass Herrera, head of the First District Court in Administrative matters of Mexico, granted the provisional suspension of bullfighting in Mexico City to be able to consider the complaint. Then, in June, the same judge removed the “provisional” status of the suspension and made it real for whatever long the proceedings will last. This is what he ruled: “Given that it is a resolution that, due to its transcendental and serious nature, may cause irreparable damage to any of the parties, based on article 102 of the Amparo Law, in relation to the jurisprudence P./J. 4/2012a THE PROCEDURE IS SUSPENDED, until a resolution is issued regarding the complaint.”  

This does not mean that in the not-too-distant future bullfighting will not be banned in the city as there are proposals to ban it in the Congress of Mexico City, but only when a law is passed to ban it we would be able to say that it is banned, not before. And this does not mean that, if that happens, it will be banned in all the country as Mexico City is only one of the states of Mexico. Some other states have already banned bullfighting, but the majority have not. Unfortunately, Mexico remains as probably the most bullfighting country in the world, but hopefully not for long (as the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation has invalidated a decree of the state of Nayarit that considered bullfighting as an Intangible Cultural Heritage, which was an obstacle to any future bullfighting bans).