Lions Save Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl: Fact Check


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Picture about Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl
Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl

Story:

Lions Save Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl

Other Versions

1. Lions Save African Girl from Kidnappers

2. Some Animals are Better than Humans

In 2005, three lions rescued an Ethiopian girl, who was kidnapped by men who wanted to force her into marriage, chasing off her abductors and protecting her until she was rescued by Ethiopian police.

Picture about Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl
Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl

3. An Ethiopian girl was brutally beaten by seven men, until a pride of lions chased the men away and proceeded to stay with and protect the girl until help arrived.

Picture about Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl
Lions Saved Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl

Fact Check:

Various stories appearing online claim to present a ‘miraculous’ incident when Lions Save Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl in Africa. Allegedly, three lions rescued the African girl by chasing off the kidnapper men and protecting her until Police came to help. The incident is presented as a portrayal of some animals better than humans. So let us examine if the claim as such is true or not.

Reports of ‘Lions Save Kidnapped Ethiopian Girl’

Back on 21 June 2005, Fox News website foxnews.com reported the incident with a title “Lions Save African Girl From Abductors“. The article was based on report of Journalist Anthony Mitchell for Associated Press, originally titled “African lions protect abducted girl, fend off attackers“. Accordingly, the 12-year-old girl kidnapped by men was beaten badly, trying to force her into a marriage. Police official Sgt. Wondimu Wedajo said the lions apparently chased off her captors and guarded the girl for about half a day until help arrived. “They stood guard until we found her and then they just left her like a gift and went back into the forest,” Wondimu said. On the other hand, a wildlife expert with the rural development ministry, Stuart Williams said the girl may have survived from lions as she was crying from the trauma of her attack.

Next day on 22 June 2005, BBC news website news.bbc.co.uk reported the story with a headline “Kidnapped girl ‘rescued’ by lions“. According to local Police, a week after abduction, the kidnappers were moving the girl with police in pursuit. At the time, the three lions encountered the group and chased the men off. The police said the lions stayed with the girl without harming her, until they came searching for her. However, some lion experts doubted the credibility of the story. They said the lions were probably preparing to eat the girl but were intercepted by the police and others. Notably, the kidnapped girl told the police that the lions did not harm her. As for the kidnappers, four of them were caught by police at that time.

To Conclude

Lions generally attack humans out of hunger, or when they feel threatened. Despite the reports in Africa describing it as a ‘miracle’ incident, it is difficult to determine the real intentions of the lions. That is, whether or not they were trying to rescue the abducted girl. Available reports do not describe the incident precisely, and there are different interpretations of the lions’ actions.

Hoax or Fact:

Undetermined.


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Prashanth Damarla
Debunker

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