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Lion cubs born in Gaza zoo have died, zoo director says

Nov. 21, 2013 at 1:35 PM

BEIT LAHIYA, Gaza, Nov. 21 (UPI) -- Two lion cubs born five days ago in a Gaza Strip zoo have died, the director of the Bissan Zoo in the city of Beit Lahiya confirmed Thursday.

The birth of the cubs, one male and one female, was heralded as one of the few positive stories emerging from the embattled area, ABC News said.

On the day of their birth, a Twitter message from Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, read, "For the first time, a lioness gives birth to 2 cubs in the besieged Gaza," and the Israeli newspaper Haaretz published the headline, "Mazal tov: Lion cubs born in Gaza!"

The cause of death has not been determined, but local pollution and the possibility the cubs caught an illness from visitors have been suggested, ABC News said.

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