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Lion in the backseat: Kuwait police face unusual task

Monday, 9 Sep 2013 | 6:47 AM ET
@kFakhouriBlog

Kuwait City faced a slightly unusual challenge over the weekend, after a lion was caught roaming around the upmarket area of Bayan.

Perhaps more surprising: A courageous passerby took the initiative to lure the animal into his vehicle. He succeeded, but eventually called the police when driving with the large cat was a bit too much to handle.

Several pictures and videos circulated on the Internet showing the lion in the backseat of a car belonging to the country's police fleet.

According to Reuters citing a security source in the world's fourth largest oil exporter, the lion was of average age and "calm by nature".

The pet allegedly got a chance to escape following its failed sale to a new owner. Describing the event as "illegal and unusual", an investigation would be launched and the current owner questioned once he returned from abroad.

Wealthy citizens in the Gulf are well-known for collecting exotic and endangered animals.

Bayan is also home to the Emir of Kuwait, and the US Embassy.

The incident sparked a wave of mockery by opponents of the Syrian President on social networks, as the Arabic word for lion is "Assad".

This story has been updated to reflect that Kuwait is the world's fourth largest oil exporter.

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