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FOUR PAWS assists the Al-Bisan zoo in Gaza

Update: 02-17-2015 - The three lions from Gaza are feeling right at home in Jordan

© Al Ma'wa

The two lions and lioness FOUR PAWS rescued from the Al-Bisan zoo in Gaza are enjoying their new lives at the New Hope Center near Amman, Jordan. They have been vaccinated and the two male lions will soon be sterilized. As soon as they no longer require close monitoring, all three will be moved from their temporary enclosure to a larger one. Their story does not end there, however.


FOUR PAWS together with the Princess Alia Foundation (PAF) is creating a new wildlife sanctuary in Jordan. This will not only be the eventual home for the three lions rescued from Gaza, but for many more wild animals rescued from bad keeping conditions and the illegal wildlife trade.


Al Ma’wa for Nature & Wildlife: A new home for our lions


The Al Ma’wa for Nature and Wildlife sanctuary will cover over roughly 345 acres. During the first construction phase, several 90 acre enclosures will become home to rescued animals waiting in the transit station near Amman. The three lions from Gaza will be among them. 


Al Ma’wa for Nature and Wildlife is located in a natural forest in the northern part of Jordan, approximately 25 miles away from the capital Amman. As soon as the sanctuary is finished, it will offer 12 species-appropriate enclosures for rescued wild animals.

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Update, 10-01-2014 - Lions from Gaza have been released into their new home in Jordan


The three lions from Gaza have been successfully released into their temporary home in Jordan. In collaboration with the Princess Alia Foundation, FOUR PAWS is setting up a new animal sanctuary, the Al Ma’wa for Nature and Wildlife, which will be the future home for rescued wild animals from all over the world. As soon as their new, larger enclosures are ready, the lions will move into their permanent home, where they can live a species-appropriate life. 


Help us offer them a better life in Al Ma'wa long-term! Donate now!

The lions survived the journey to Jordan rather well and have already been released last night.
© VIER PFOTEN | Birgit Leber

Update09-29-2014 - FOUR PAWS rescues lions from Gaza zoo 


The FOUR PAWS team has finally managed to reach the heavily damaged Al-Bisan zoo in Beit Lahiya in the north of the Gaza Strip. In the next few hours the transport of the three lions will be arranged. If everything goes according to plan, we will be able to transfer the traumatized lions (two lions and one lioness) to their new species-appropriate home in Jordan tomorrow morning! There, the lions can finally start to recover from the experiences they have had in the last couple of months and the pregnant lioness will hopefully give life to healthy lion cubs soon. Donate now!


Help us save the lions!

Help us complete this difficult rescue mission! Your donation will not only help to save the severely traumatized lions from the Gaza Strip, but will also help secure the long-term survival of all the animals from the Al-Bisan zoo!

Donate now!

Update, 09-17-2014 - Emergency operations, medical supplies, food and water for animals in a zoo in Gaza


FOUR PAWS has supplied food, water, and urgent medicine for the few surviving animals in the severely damaged Al-Bisan Zoo in northern Gaza. Some animals underwent operations on the spot. Please support our mission and help us now to save the animals in the zoos in Gaza! Donate now!

A FOUR PAWS emergency team is helping the surviving animals of the Al-Bisan Zoo in the North of the Gaza Strip, among them three lions, by providing urgently needed medical care and food. 

More than 80 animals died when a zoo in northern Gaza was severely damaged by air strikes.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

 The week-long conflict in the Gaza Strip has resulted in thousands of dead and injured. Since the newest outbreak in early July, countless buildings and facilities have been destroyed, affecting not only people, but also animals. More than 80 animals died when the Al-Bisan zoo in northern Gaza was severely damaged by air strikes. The 21 surviving animals are finally receiving help. A FOUR PAWS emergency team, headed by Dr. Amir Khalil and local supporters, has managed to deliver urgently needed medicine and food to what remains of the zoo. The team is also fixing damaged enclosures and restoring the water supply by repairing the pipes.

The Lions are hungry, ill and very weak.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

As FOUR PAWS is well connected in the region, zoo manager Shady Hamad had officially asked the international animal welfare organization for help, because the remaining zoo animals had been left without food or water.


Most of the enclosures have been severely damaged and there are several dead animals lying around the cages. The few surviving animals, among them three lions, are traumatized, ill, and very weak.


The emergency team, equipped with antibiotics, disinfectants, and de-worming medication, is now carrying out medical treatment on-site. The first food deliveries have also been organized, as well as fridges, which arrived yesterday. As a next step, FOUR PAWS will attempt to find a solution for the remaining animals that survived. With the lions' enclosure also damaged, we must next undertake security measures to ensure the safety of the lions and the local people.

The emergency team, equipped with antibiotics, disinfectants and de-worming medication, is now carrying out medical treatment on-site.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

The Sinai Peninsula as well as the border area between Egypt and Israel are frequently subject to terrorist attacks. The FOUR PAWS team planned the operation from Cairo, working with the Egyptian authorities and local NGOs. The team’s safety was our top priority. We were finally able to reach the Gaza Strip accompanied by a military convoy.


It is still unclear if the zoo will be able to carry on. We will now assess, whether the lions can be transferred to a safe place outside Gaza. This is likely to be decided in the next few days.


Please support our project with your donation to help animals in need:

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