Nearly fifty lions, ostriches, foxes and gazelles, among other animals, have been evacuated today from the Gaza Strip, where they lived in a zoo in the city of Rafah, in the south of the enclave under Israeli blockade.
The Australian organization Four Paws took the animals from the cages where they were locked in terrible conditions and was able to move them to Jordan, via Israel, after coordinating with the Israeli authorities, who control the entrances and exits of all kinds with the Palestinian Strip.
"This zoo has faced many problems, it is the oldest in Gaza, many animals have died due to the weather and economic conditions, as well as the military problems in Gaza." Keeping the zoo was a burden for the owner, said Amir Jalil. , of Four Paws, who pointed out that the situation was especially distressing for larger predators, who lived in small cages.
The Rafah zoo became infamous in January of this year after four lion cubs froze and shortly thereafter images of a lioness were revealed with her fingernails removed with pruning shears.
"I hope no one has to go through what I've been through, I've raised some of these animals for more than twenty years and I've lost them all in a moment," laments Fathi Jomaa, the owner, who hopes they can now a better life.
In Gaza, where there is no legislation protecting the rights of animals, there have been six zoos, but five of them have closed due to lack of visits and financial difficulties.
The economic situation in the coastal enclave has deteriorated badly since the violent takeover by the Islamist movement Hamas in 2007, when Israel, which like the US or the European Union, among others, considers it a terrorist organization, imposed a blockade By land, sea and air.