Around 75 near-naked animal rights activists covered themselves in faux blood in Pamplona, Spain on Tuesday to protest the treatment of bulls during the upcoming San Fermin festival. The San Fermin festival is notable for the running of the bulls where people run in front of a group of loose bulls down a Pamplona street.

There are eight bull runs over the festival, each starting at 8am and taking 3-5 minutes. Evening bullfights also take place over the course of the festival, which lasts from 7-14 July.

The protest was organised by AnimaNaturalis and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) who say that almost 50 animals will die over the course of the festival. The protesters wore bull horns and held signs in different languages reading 'Pamplona: Bloodbath for Bulls'.

"Each of the bulls terrorised in the streets of Pamplona will suffer an excruciating death in front of a screaming crowd in the bullring", says PETA UK Director Mimi Bekhechi. "We're calling for a permanent end to this widely condemned display of violence and suffering."

Bullfighting is a contentious issue in Spain where animal rights activists call it a cruel bloodsport while defenders say it is a cultural tradition. During a bullfight, a torero will make certain moves close to and around a bull, usually ending with the bull being killed.

Animal rights activists in Pamplona
Animal rights activists cover themselves in faux blood in protest at the upcoming Pamplona San Fermin festival. PETA