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Lions rescue, guard beaten Ethiopian girl

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
If this is true, it's got to be a miracle!
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories...MPLATE=DEFAULT
Lions rescue, guard beaten Ethiopian girl

By ANTHONY MITCHELL
Associated Press Writer

"ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) -- A 12-year-old girl who was abducted and beaten by men trying to force her into a marriage was found being guarded by three lions who apparently had chased off her captors, a policeman said Tuesday.

The girl, missing for a week, had been taken by seven men who wanted to force her to marry one of them, said Sgt. Wondimu Wedajo, speaking by telephone from the provincial capital of Bita Genet, about 350 miles southwest of Addis Ababa.

She was beaten repeatedly before she was found June 9 by police and relatives on the outskirts of Bita Genet, Wondimu said. She had been guarded by the lions for about half a day, he said.

"They stood guard until we found her and then they just left her like a gift and went back into the forest," Wondimu said.

"If the lions had not come to her rescue, then it could have been much worse. Often these young girls are raped and severely beaten to force them to accept the marriage," he said.

Tilahun Kassa, a local government official who corroborated Wondimu's version of the events, said one of the men had wanted to marry the girl against her wishes.

"Everyone thinks this is some kind of miracle, because normally the lions would attack people," Wondimu said.

Stuart Williams, a wildlife expert with the rural development ministry, said the girl may have survived because she was crying from the trauma of her attack.

"A young girl whimpering could be mistaken for the mewing sound from a lion cub, which in turn could explain why they didn't eat her," Williams said.

Ethiopia's lions, famous for their large black manes, are the country's national symbol and adorn statues and the local currency. Despite a recent crackdown, Hunters also kill the animals for their skins, which can fetch $1,000. Williams estimates that only 1,000 Ethiopian lions remain in the wild.

The girl, the youngest of four siblings, was "shocked and terrified" after her abduction and had to be treated for the cuts from her beatings, Wondimu said.

He said police had caught four of the abductors and three were still at large.

Kidnapping young girls has long been part of the marriage custom in Ethiopia. The United Nations estimates that more than 70 percent of marriages in Ethiopia are by abduction, practiced in rural areas where most of the country's 71 million people live."
post #2 of 15
That's why I love lions. I am glad the girl is all right. What an awful custom forcing little girls into marriage. I know one has to respect people's customs but some of them are just inhumane. I only wish the lion's ate the kidnappers that would have been a good outcome
post #3 of 15
"Kidnapping young girls has long been part of the marriage custom in Ethiopia. The United Nations estimates that more than 70 percent of marriages in Ethiopia are by abduction, practiced in rural areas where most of the country's 71 million people live."

How appalling!
Whether they thought she was a lion cub, or were just curious, good for the lions!
post #4 of 15
That is pretty amazing!
post #5 of 15
Go kitties!
post #6 of 15
This is weird... I would hate to get this girl mad at me...

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/8305836/?GT1=6657
post #7 of 15
Hrmn... I'm not entirely sure how to take that story. Mostly with a pinch of salt, I'm afraid. I've seen fraudulent stories like this one before... so I don't know of the authenticity of it. All I can say is that if this is all true, she's one very lucky little girl. To be repeatedly beaten in an attempt to force a marriage is bad enough... but the lions as well! It highlights the intelligence of wild animals as well really
post #8 of 15
I think it's probably a bit contrived but still a good read nonetheless
post #9 of 15
That was surely divine intervention! I just heard that story yesterday, too. It was on the news then, too. God must have some good plans for her in her future!
post #10 of 15
GOD bless the GIRL and the LIONS!!
post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big-Cat-Fan
GOD bless the GIRL and the LIONS!!
Amen!
post #12 of 15
Although this story is true to a certain extent, game warders are now stating that unless the girls family and the police arrived then and there, she would have been eaten for dinner.

It's quite common in africa for humans to become unwilling dinner partners for lions.

.
post #13 of 15
These threads have been merged.
post #14 of 15
What a great story!! I'm sure it could happen. Thank you for sharing
post #15 of 15
I'm not very fond of lions. Ever since I saw "Ghost and the Darkness" (brrrrrr!)

Cindy
Mom to Narsil, Mithril and Kellie da Peke
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