x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Newborn lion cubs die in Hamas-run zoo in Gaza

Newborn lion cubs unveiled by Hamas as prized additions to a zoo they run have died.

The cubs – a male and a female - were unveiled at two days old. One was named Sejil after last year’s war between Hamas militants and Israel, and the other was called Fajr after an Iranian-type missile. Mohammed Abed / AFP
The cubs – a male and a female - were unveiled at two days old. One was named Sejil after last year’s war between Hamas militants and Israel, and the other was called Fajr after an Iranian-type missile. Mohammed Abed / AFP

GAZA CITY // Gaza authorities say two newborn lion cubs just unveiled by Hamas as prized additions in a zoo they run have died.

Mohammad Abdel-Rahman, the acting manager of the Beit Lahiya zoo in northern Gaza, said on Thursday the cubs died of an unspecified illness. He said the zoo’s staff was unable to save them because they lacked experience in caring for newborn cubs.

Hamas unveiled the cubs – a male and a female – and named them for last year’s war between Hamas militants and Israel. One was named Fajr after an Iranian-type missile used in the fighting. The other was called Sejil for the name of the campaign.

Their mother, a four-year-old African lioness, was smuggled into Gaza via tunnels from Egypt.

Gaza zoos have a haphazard animal welfare record.

Associated Press