In a miraculous turn of events, three heroic lions rescued a 12-year-old girl who was kidnapped in Ethiopia by men planning to force her into marriage. The brave lions chased away her captors and guarded her until local authorities arrived on the scene.
The young girl was held captive for a week in a remote area of southwest Ethiopia, where she was subjected to frequent beatings at the hands of her kidnappers. It was then that the lions intervened, scaring off the abductors and providing protection for the girl.
Ethiopian police Sergeant Wondimu Wendaju of Kefa province shared the details of the rescue, stating that the lions guarded the girl for half a day until her family and law enforcement arrived. He added that had it not been for the lions’ intervention, the situation could have been much worse, as these girls are often raped and brutally beaten in order to force them into accepting the marriage.
Wildlife expert Stuart Williams, who works with the rural development ministry, believes that the girl’s crying may have saved her life. He explained that the sound of a young girl sobbing could be mistaken for a lion cub’s mewing, which could be the reason the lions did not harm her.
Sergeant Wondimu reported that the girl was “shocked and terrified” and required treatment for the injuries she sustained during her captivity. Ethiopian authorities have since apprehended four of the kidnappers, while three others remain at large.