Facebook users share old photos of lions in Sudan in posts about Bangladesh zoo

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Three photos of malnourished lions are circulating in Facebook posts that claim they were taken at a zoo in Bangladesh. The claim is false: the images were originally shared in reports about a zoo in Sudan in January 2020.  

The photos of the lions were posted here on Facebook on June 19, 2021. The post has been shared more than 700 times.

The post’s Bengali-language caption reads: ''We request the authority of Mirpur Zoo to set these wild animals free. If you can't fulfil your duty, then there is no right to trade with these wild animals. If anyone comes across this post who has the ability to do something about it, then please take some action.'' 

Mirpur Zoo is Bangladesh’s National Zoo in the capital Dhaka. It is home to more than 2,500 creatures, including eight endangered Bengal tigers, as reported here by AFP.

The same images were shared with a similar claim here, here and here on Facebook.

However, the claim is false. 

A reverse image search found two of the three photos were posted here on Facebook in January 2020.

They were uploaded on the verified page of Osman Salih, who describes himself as CEO at Sudan Animal Rescue.

His post reads in part: "I was shaken when I saw these lions at the park... their bones are protruding from the skin”.

"I urge interested people and institutions to help them," he wrote. 

Below is a screenshot comparison of the images in the misleading post (L) and the images shared by Salih (R) :

The campaign to save the five lions caged in Khartoum's Al-Qureshi Park was reported here by AFP on January 20, 2020.

The final photo in the misleading post was taken by AFP photographer Ashraf Shazly at al-Qureshi Park in the Sudanese capital Khartoum on January 20, 2020. 

Below is a screenshot comparison of the final photo in the misleading post (L) and Shazly’s photo (R):

Shazly posted the images on Facebook here.