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HORSE

Thurgau’s rescued horses sold at auction

A public sale of 93 mistreated horses from a farm in Thurgau resulted in most of the animals being sold amid high public interest.

Thurgau’s rescued horses sold at auction
Not one of the horses. File photo:IgorVetushko/Depositphotos

Around 500 people turned up for the auction at Schönbuhl army barracks in the canton of Bern on Thursday, 20 Minuten reported.

It said demand was so great that lots had to be drawn for some of the horses.

The sale was by auction with the maximum price being 500 francs over the animal’s estimated value.

The horses, including foals, were among 300 animals confiscated from the farm on August 7th after pictures published in newspaper Blick showed severely malnourished and mistreated horses at the property. 

Since then the animals have been cared for by recruits at the Swiss army's veterinary training centre in Schonbühl. 

The defence ministry tweeted earlier this week that the horses were on the road to recovery.

As the army centre could not house the animals beyond August 18th the Thurgau cantonal veterinary service decided to put them up for sale.

Opening the sale, the auctioneer said the aim was to give the animals back their dignity. 

The speed of the sale angered some animal welfare groups, including Animal Protection Switzerland (PSA). 

The Swiss news agency SDA said animal rights activists had purchased some of the animals, angering private buyers who felt they had no chance.  

DIAMOND

Rare pink diamond to go under hammer in Geneva

An extremely rare pink diamond will be auctioned in Geneva on November 11 by Sotheby's, which says it is worth between $23 and $38 million.

Rare pink diamond to go under hammer in Geneva
A model poses with the “The Spirit of the Rose” diamond during a press preview on Friday. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP
Named “The Spirit of the Rose” after a famous Russian ballet, the 14.83-carat diamond mined in Russia is the biggest ever to go under the hammer in its category — “fancy vivid purple-pink”.
 
The occurrence of pink diamonds in nature is extremely rare in any size,” Gary Schuler, head of Sotheby's jewellery division, said in a statement. “Only one per cent of all pink diamonds are larger than 10-carats.”
   
Speaking to AFP, Benoit Repellin, head of fine jewellery auctions at Sotheby's Geneva, said the oval-shaped diamond was “completely pure.”
 
 
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The rough diamond was unearthed by Russia's Alrosa — one of the world's leading diamond producers — in the Republic of Sakha in the northeast of the country in July 2017.
   
Repellin said it took a painstaking year for cutting masters to turn the diamond into its polished form.
   
Sotheby's said the world auction record for a diamond and any gemstone or jewel was the “CTF Pink Star”, a 59.60-carat oval pink diamond that sold for $71.2 million in Hong Kong in 2017.
   
According to Repellin, five out of the 10 most valuable diamonds ever sold at auction were pink.
   
The sale of this gem coincides with the closure of the world's largest pink diamond mine in Australia after it exhausted its reserves of the precious stones.
   
The Argyle mine, in the remote Kimberley region of Western Australia, churned out more than 90 percent of the world's pink diamonds.
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