The Mosul Zoo was turned into a staging ground for ISIS and as a result, all but the one lion and bear had been killed, starved to death or escaped or even sold.
Thankfully, many have intervened to help the abandoned animals. The Kurdistan Organization for Animal Rights group, for example, stepped in, passing through five security checkpoints in order to bring the starving animals food and water. Residents have also banded together to feed the animals, offering what little they can.
And now we have more hopeful news to share: the Four Paws International rapid response team has been working diligently to rescue the starving bear and lion, named Lula and Simba respectively. And it looks like their determination has paid off, Lula and Simba have finally be saved! The two are waiting to be allowed to cross into Kurdish territory and fly out of the country and then into safety.
####While the two animals wait at the checkpoint, they are being looked after by a veterinary team. Sadly, both are unwell. Lula has pneumonia and Simba has joint conditions.
As of right now, Four Paws and the two animals are still at the checkpoint but rescuers are hopeful they will be able to leave soon.
We are truly in awe of the Four Paws rapid response team for going above and beyond for these two animals. We are thrilled to know Lula and Simba are at least getting a second chance at life and are on their way to freedom.
If you would like to donate to help cover the costs of the rescue, you can do so here. Every little bit helps!