Chilean zoo forced to kill lions to save suicidal man in cage

Updated: 2016-05-23 17:03


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Chilean zoo forced to kill lions to save suicidal man in cage

A screen grab from Twitter

SANTIAGO -- A zoo in Chile was forced to kill two lions after a man entered the big cats' cage attempting to commit suicide, the zoo and local media said Sunday.

"A man got on the roof of the enclosure of the lions, broke the fence," took his clothes off before approaching the lions around noon on Saturday, the National Zoo of Chile said in an official statement on its verified Facebook account.

Local television network TVN said the man reportedly climbed down with a robe, while other reports confirmed that he was attempting to commit suicide and that a note was found in his clothes.

The man was attacked by two of the lions after he jumped toward them and shouted. Zoo staff then decided to shoot the lions with live rounds.

"We were forced to implement all our security protocols" to protect the man, as it was hardly possible to remove him from the cage at the time, the zoo said, admitting it was painful to lose the lions, a male and a female.

"These were lions that had been with us for more than 20 years," the TVN quoted a zoo official as saying.