Social Media Claim

Cattle in #BanBullfighting post are from Iran cattle market

A Facebook post from September 5, 2019, is tagged with messages calling for the banning of bullfighting and the running of the bulls.

The Statement

AAP Fact Check examined a post published on September 5, 2019 by the Facebook page Expose Trophy Hunting that has been shared by multiple Australian users.

The image in the post is a photo of three cattle standing close together. One of them has a white cloth tied over it face.

The image is overlaid at the bottom with a caption that reads: “There is something so very dreadful, so Satanic, in tormenting those who have never harmed us, who cannot defend themselves, who are utterly in our power.”

The text accompanying the post reads: “So true #BanBullfighting #BanRunningWithTheBulls”.

The post has been shared more than 550 times, with more than 1,200 reactions and 120 comments.

A man buys a sacrificial sheep at a cattle market in Tehran, Iran, for Eid al-Adha celebrations.

The Analysis

AAP FactCheck traced the original photo of the cattle to the website of Iran-based Mehr News Agency. The image was uploaded on August 11, 2019, as part of a series entitled “People trading at livestock market ahead of Eid al-Adha festival in Hamedan”.

Mehr credits the photo series to Iman Hamikhah, a self-described documentary-social photographer who works for the company.

The photo series on the Mehr website is accompanied by the description: “This is a cattle market set up in Hamedan in the run up to Eid al-Adha. Every year thousands of animals are brought to this makeshift market to be sacrificed. Eid al-Adha, is also known as a festival of the sacrifice in honor of the willingness of the Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God's command.”

Hamedan, also spelled Hamadan, is a provincial capital city in the west of Iran.

Hamikhah also uploaded the image of the cattle to his Instagram page on August 11.

A version of the image showing the “There is something so very dreadful …” caption appeared on another Instagram account on August 24. That account included the message “Embrace veganism” but made no mention of bullfighting or the running of the bulls. Bull running is an annual event in parts of Spain, the most well-known being The Running of the Bulls in Pamplona .

The account showing the edited image attributed the “original photo” to another Instagram user who posted on August 20.

That user attached the following quotation, attributed to actor Joaquin Phoenix, in the text of the post: “It takes nothing away from a human to be kind to an animal.”

The Verdict

Based on the evidence above, AAP FactCheck has determined that the photo is not related to bullfighting or a running of the bulls event. It was taken by photographer Iman Hamikhah as part of a series documenting a cattle market in the Iranian city of Hamedan.

  • False - The Facebook post is false.

First published September 9, 2019, 17:11 AEST