Lions escape cage at Leipzig Zoo | News | DW | 29.09.2016
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Lions escape cage at Leipzig Zoo

Two lions escaped from their cage at the Leipzig Zoo overnight. For one of the animals, the incident ended tragically.

Lions at Leipzig Zoo (picture-alliance/dpa/J. Woitas)

The lions Motshegetsi and Majo.

The two male lions, Majo and Motshegetsi, escaped overnight and were seen roaming the grounds of the zoo on Thursday, prompting security personnel to attempt to corral them.

The zoo's director, Jörg Junhold, said the animals had retreated behind a row of bushes. One of the lions was returned to its cage, but the second, after being unsuccessfully tranquilized, was shot dead.

"Human safety comes first," Junhold said. He said it wasn't clear how the animals escaped in the first place.

Earlier this month, the zoo had tweeted about the lions, who were born about a year ago in Basel Zoo in Switzerland. They had been at the Leipzig Zoo since August.

The zoo was closed at the time of the incident, so no one was in danger of being harmed.

blc/kms (dpa, ARD)