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Palio horse race ‘will not get World Heritage status’

Italy’s tourism minister has decided against putting the Palio di Siena up for Unesco World Heritage status because of the injuries sustained by horses in the race.

Horse insurance customers who follow the annual event may be shocked by the estimates of animal rights groups that in the last 30 years at least 50 equines have met their end while racing, reports the Telegraph.

Michela Brambilla said the dangers posed to the animals and the divisive nature of the event, with animal rights campaigners vehemently against it, meant it is not representative of all Italian culture.

“The disgrace of dead and injured horses cannot allow the Palio of Siena to be a positive symbol of Italy,” she asserted.

Among the traditions that will be put forward are pizza making in Naples, the violin makers of Cremona and a number of other festivals.

This comes after two horses racing in the Grand National at Aintree last weekend were killed during the events.

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