Colombia's Congress bans bullfights

FILE PHOTO: An animal rights activist holds a puppy while taking part in a demonstration demanding the approval of a law that prohibits bullfights, cockfights and events where animals are abused, in Bogota

BOGOTA (Reuters) - Colombia's Congress banned bullfighting on Tuesday following seven years of failed attempts to prohibit the activity, which some political and social groups have vowed to maintain citing its cultural value.

The bill prohibiting bullfighting passed with 93 votes in favor and two against.

"We do not believe that an expression of torture and barbarism can be considered cultural," said lawmaker Juan Carlos Losada.

Colombia's constitutional court had urged Congress in recent years to issue a definitive regulation on the matter.

Bullfighting events are prohibited by law in some Latin American countries such as Argentina and Cuba, while they are legal in most of Mexico and Peru.

(Reporting by Nelson Bocanegra; Editing by Stephen Coates)