Spanish matador Ivan Fandino leans his face on the barrier during a bullfight at the Maestranza bullring in the Andalusian capital of Seville, southern Spain April 26, 2015Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Fandino, pictured here in Seville in 2015, had been injured by a bull before

A Spanish bullfighter has died after being gored during a festival in southwest France.

Ivan Fandino, 36, caught his feet in his cloak and fell to the floor, where he was gored by the bull.

He suffered a lung injury and died on his way to hospital from a heart attack on Saturday, French media say.

Fandino, who was taking part in the Aire-sur-l’Adour bullfighting festival near Pau, is reportedly the first matador to die in France in a century.

The Basque-born matador had already taken part in a competition earlier in the day before he was injured.

Photographs showed he was conscious, but bleeding heavily, as he was led away from the ring.

Last July, bullfighter Victor Barrio, 29, became the first matador to die in Spain in 30 years after he was gored during an event being aired live on television.

France’s Sud-Ouest newspaper said the last matador fatality in France was in 1921, when Isidoro Mari Fernando died in the arena in B├ęziers.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Fandino was thrown in the air by a bull in Pamplona in 2015

Fandino had been injured at least twice in previous events – once in 2015, when thrown into the air by a bull in Pamplona, Spain, but more seriously the year before when he was knocked unconscious in Bayonne, France.

Opponents describe the blood-soaked pageants as barbaric, while fans say the tradition is an ancient art form deeply rooted in national history.

Bullfighting was declared legal in France in 2012 after the Constitutional Council rejected a plea from animal rights campaigners to ban the practice.

More than 1,000 bulls are killed annually in French bullfights, the AFP news agency reported at the time.

Although bullfighting originated in neighbouring Spain, it took root in France a century and a half ago. Fights – known as corridas in Spain – are especially popular in the Nimes and Arles areas.

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