Watch: Lions rescued from Ukraine circus arrive in South Africa

Watch: Lions rescued from Ukraine circus arrive in South Africa

A tale of returning home: Four depressed circus Lions discovered life in the wild thanks to Turkish Cargo.


Johannesburg, South Africa – National flag carrier Turkish Airlines’ cargo company, Turkish Cargo, embarked on a rescue mission for three sister lions named Luca, Charlie and Kai and a male cub named Nathan. Turkish Cargo delivered the lions to their natural habitat in South Africa by transporting them on a flight from the Ukraine to Johannesburg with a stopover in Istanbul.

The Lions were saved by South African Lionel de Lange, Director of the Lawrence Anthony World Organization (LAEO) in the Ukraine. “I knew that I couldn’t leave these lions behind. They were living in 35 square metres of concrete and steel. Their cage was welded shut so you couldn’t open or close or get in to clean them. So they were living in their faeces and urine and leftover food bones.”

On their journey, Luca, Charlie, Kai and Nathan were accompanied by Lionel, expert veterinarians and Turkish Cargo personnel certified in transporting live animals.

After a marathon flight of almost 9,000 kilometres (5,592 miles), the lions were set free in the Kragga Kamma Game Park in Port Elizabeth. The Lions’ new home is a natural habitat offering 14,000 square meters (nearly 150,700 square feet) of green coastal forest and meadows.

Commenting on the rescue mission, Turkish Aırlines Senior Vice President of Media Relations Yahya Üstün added, “We transported four lions rescued from a 35-square-meter room in Ukraine to their natural habitat in South Africa. Now it is their turn to enjoy and discover freedom. We will continue to be a protector of nature with the special operations of our Turkish Cargo brand.”

Watch the emotional video below:

Sources: Turkish Airlines
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and man in charge at Good Things Guy. Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

1 Comment

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    March 11, 2019 at 11:02 am

    Thank you ALL so very much. They didn’t deserve it. Now they can be who they were born to be.

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