The completely malnourished and emaciated cats are said to be stuck behind bars at Al-Qureshi animal park in the capital, Khartoum.
They have not been given enough food or medicine for weeks as the country is in the grip of a shocking economic crisis.
Some reports say one of the lions has already died after being left looking like nothing more than a bag of “skin and bones.”
Over the weekend, Osman Salih walked past the park and after seeing the lions and their horrible conditions, decided to start an online campaign called #SudanAnimalRescue in order to raise awareness about what is going on and to help save the animals.
He wrote on Facebook:
I was shaken when I saw these lions at the park. Their bones are protruding from the skin.
I urge interested people and institutions to help them.
As per The Sun, a manager at the privately funded park, Essamelddine Hajjar, said:
Food is not always available so often we buy it from our own money to feed them.
Park officials and veterinarians said that the lions’ conditions had deteriorated over the past few weeks as food became less available in the midst of Sudan’s economic crisis.
Furthermore, chunks of rotten meat covered in flies were seen scattered near the rusty cages, reports the Guardian.
On Monday, Salih reported that one of the lions, a female, died from her illness, while another had been transported to a clinic for better care.
He also announced that he had finally submitted paperwork for a partnership with FOUR PAWS International, who will be sending “an emergency rescue to rehabilitate the animals not only at Qurashi zoo but other parks in Sudan as well as train staff at wildlife authority.”
It is unclear how many lions are in Sudan but they are classified as a “vulnerable” species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Their population dropped 43 percent between 1993 and 2014, with only around 20,000 alive today.
Let’s hope we can do more to save these beautiful animals before it’s too late.
Images via Facebook/Ashraf Shazly/Getty
Charismatic, witty, charming, engaging - four things Joshua Rogers will never be. Thankfully, he’s a semi-competent editor, who, after graduating university with two mostly pointless degrees, joined The Hook two years ago. He subsequently honed his writing skills over several features and investigative pieces, arguably letting The Hook audience in on way too much of his personal life.