A lion was reported on the loose in Dubai’s Al Barsha neighbourhood on Thursday evening. The lion is believed to have escaped from its owner’s home in the area. Courtesy Dubai Municipality
A lion was reported on the loose in Dubai’s Al Barsha neighbourhood on Thursday evening. The lion is believed to have escaped from its owner’s home in the area. Courtesy Dubai Municipality

Lioness captured after three-hour prowl in Dubai’s Al Barsha

DUBAI // A young lioness that escaped from her owner is believed to have roamed the streets for more than three hours before she was captured by a team of Dubai Municipality animal welfare officers.

Dubai Police said they received reports of the lioness prowling the streets of Al Barsha neighbourhood, one of the newer residential developments on the city’s west side, at about 7pm on Thurday.

The animal was thought to have been on the loose since about 6pm and was caught three hours later, a rescuer said.

Officials said they did not know how she escaped from her home, located a few blocks from where she was found.

Thani Al Suwaidi was one of four Dubai Municipality animal welfare workers to respond to the police call asking for help in capturing the lioness.

The team arrived on the scene at 8.30pm to find the lioness crouching between two houses as police and about 15 onlookers kept a safe distance.

“It was lying down. A trainer was next to it but ... the lion was not listening to him,” Mr Al ­Suwaidi said.

“It was just lying down because there were too many people and it was frightened.”

The animal was thought to be about six months old. Mr Al ­Suwaidi said because the ­lioness was small his team were able to catch her without resorting to sedation. Two animal welfare workers stood in front of her and two behind.

“A lion that size can’t jump really high, so basically it had to go through us. Thank God, alhamdulillah, we controlled the situation,” Mr Al Suwaidi said.

They captured her using a catch-pole, similar to those used for catching stray dogs.

“As soon as we restrained the animal, she got a little erratic. We subdued her and then put her in our vehicle.”

The lioness, which Mr Al Suwaidi said did not have a name, was kept overnight at the Dubai Municipality veterinary centre.

Yesterday, when she was transferred to Dubai Zoo, the lioness became a little more defensive, Mr Al Suwaidi said.

“She was trying to attack us all. We had to sedate her,” he said.

“She sounds much bigger than she looks. She made me jump. When she roars, the sound is terrifying.”

The animal was in “great shock” after escaping, said Dr Reza Khan, Dubai Zoo’s wildlife specialist.

“That would be a shock for her to be in the open world without the cage. Then, she was captured, so that was kind of traumatic for a wild animal when you go and capture it,” he said.

“But she will recover.”

While the lionness was not declawed, two of her canine teeth are missing.

Dr Khan said a full health check would be completed once the animal had settled down.

The big cat cannot be reintroduced into the wild because, after being removed from her pride, she would lose predatory instincts, Dr Khan said.

She will remain at the zoo, where she will gradually be introduced to the lion population there.

“It will always expect food to be in front of him or her. It would be killed by another one – it wouldn’t know how to defend itself,” he said.

Although it is illegal to keep wild animals as household pets, exceptions are made for members of the Ruling Family or anyone who has official authorisation, officials said.

Illegal ownership of smuggled animals is not as popular as it was in the 1980s and 1990s, but it is not uncommon in the UAE, said Dr Khan.

He called for tougher laws to prevent private ownership of such animals.

“I think Government has legislated against keeping these animals captive, but we need a wildlife act,” Dr Khan said.

“There should be a real severe punishment if you’re having wild animals – especially dangerous wild animals, like crocodiles, lions, tigers, orangutan, gorillas. It could endanger anybody’s life, not only the owner’s.”

Ghaith Al Falasi, head of the inspection unit for Dubai Municipality’s veterinary services, said this was the first incidence of a lion escaping in the emirate this year.

“We had two others in 2015, but they weren’t lions, they were cheetahs,” Mr Al Falasi said. The owners were not charged in either case.


How the bonus system works

The two riders are among several riders in the UAE to receive the top payment of £10,000 under the Thank You Fund of £16 million (Dh80m), which was announced in conjunction with Deliveroo's £8 billion (Dh40bn) stock market listing earlier this year.

The £10,000 (Dh50,000) payment is made to those riders who have completed the highest number of orders in each market.

There are also riders who will receive payments of £1,000 (Dh5,000) and £500 (Dh2,500).

All riders who have worked with Deliveroo for at least one year and completed 2,000 orders will receive £200 (Dh1,000), the company said when it announced the scheme.

The lowdown

Rating: 4/5

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700 - Dubai Hurricanes had more than 700 playing members last season between their mini and youth, men's and women's teams

Dh600,000 - Dubai Exiles' budget for pitch and court hire next season, for their rugby, netball and cricket teams

Dh1.8m - Dubai Hurricanes' overall budget for next season

Dh2.8m - Dubai Exiles’ overall budget for next season


Company name: Almouneer
Started: 2017
Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
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Mr Zelenskyy was applauded by MPs in the Bundestag as he addressed Chancellor Olaf Scholz directly.

"Dear Mr Scholz, tear down this Wall," he said, evoking US President Ronald Reagan's 1987 appeal to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at Berlin's Brandenburg Gate.


Starring: Lupita Nyong'o, Joseph Quinn, Djimon Hounsou

Director: Michael Sarnoski

Rating: 4/5


Display: 6.7” flexible Amoled, 2412 x 1080, 394ppi, 120Hz, Corning Gorilla Glass 5

Processor: MediaTek Dimensity 7200 Pro, 4nm, octa-core

Memory: 8/12GB

Capacity: 128/256GB

Platform: Android 14, Nothing OS 2.5

Main camera: Dual 50MP main, f/1.88 + 50MP ultra-wide, f/2.2; OIS, EIS, auto-focus, ultra XDR, night mode

Main camera video: 4K @ 30fps, full-HD @ 60fps; slo-mo full-HD at 120fps

Front camera: 32MP wide, f/2.2

Battery: 5000mAh; 50% in 30 mins w/ 45w charger

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC (Google Pay)

Biometrics: Fingerprint, face unlock


Durability: IP54, limited protection from water/dust

Cards: Dual-nano SIM

Colours: Black, milk, white

In the box: Nothing Phone (2a), USB-C-to-USB-C cable, pre-applied screen protector, SIM tray ejector tool

Price (UAE): Dh1,199 (8GB/128GB) / Dh1,399 (12GB/256GB)


Ali Khaseif, Mohammed Al Shamsi, Fahad Al Dhanhani, Khalid Essa, Bandar Al Ahbabi, Salem Rashid, Shaheen Abdulrahman, Khalifa Al Hammadi, Mohammed Al Attas, Walid Abbas, Hassan Al Mahrami, Mahmoud Khamis, Alhassan Saleh, Ali Salmeen, Yahia Nader, Abdullah Ramadan, Majed Hassan, Abdullah Al Naqbi, Fabio De Lima, Khalil Al Hammadi, Khalfan Mubarak, Tahnoun Al Zaabi, Muhammed Jumah, Yahya Al Ghassani, Caio Canedo, Ali Mabkhout, Sebastian Tagliabue, Zayed Al Ameri

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Company: Verity

Date started: May 2021

Founders: Kamal Al-Samarrai, Dina Shoman and Omar Al Sharif

Based: Dubai

Sector: FinTech

Size: four team members

Stage: Intially bootstrapped but recently closed its first pre-seed round of $800,000

Investors: Wamda, VentureSouq, Beyond Capital and regional angel investors

Nepotism is the name of the game

Salman Khan’s father, Salim Khan, is one of Bollywood’s most legendary screenwriters. Through his partnership with co-writer Javed Akhtar, Salim is credited with having paved the path for the Indian film industry’s blockbuster format in the 1970s. Something his son now rules the roost of. More importantly, the Salim-Javed duo also created the persona of the “angry young man” for Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan in the 1970s, reflecting the angst of the average Indian. In choosing to be the ordinary man’s “hero” as opposed to a thespian in new Bollywood, Salman Khan remains tightly linked to his father’s oeuvre. Thanks dad. 


Director: Rajesh A Krishnan

Starring: Tabu, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kriti Sanon

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The burning issue

The internal combustion engine is facing a watershed moment – major manufacturer Volvo is to stop producing petroleum-powered vehicles by 2021 and countries in Europe, including the UK, have vowed to ban their sale before 2040. The National takes a look at the story of one of the most successful technologies of the last 100 years and how it has impacted life in the UAE. 

Read part four: an affection for classic cars lives on

Read part three: the age of the electric vehicle begins

Read part two: how climate change drove the race for an alternative 

Fines for littering

In Dubai:

Dh200 for littering or spitting in the Dubai Metro

Dh500 for throwing cigarette butts or chewing gum on the floor, or littering from a vehicle. 
Dh1,000 for littering on a beach, spitting in public places, throwing a cigarette butt from a vehicle

In Sharjah and other emirates
Dh500 for littering - including cigarette butts and chewing gum - in public places and beaches in Sharjah
Dh2,000 for littering in Sharjah deserts
Dh500 for littering from a vehicle in Ras Al Khaimah
Dh1,000 for littering from a car in Abu Dhabi
Dh1,000 to Dh100,000 for dumping waste in residential or public areas in Al Ain
Dh10,000 for littering at Ajman's beaches 


Company name: Revibe
Started: 2022
Founders: Hamza Iraqui and Abdessamad Ben Zakour
Based: UAE
Industry: Refurbished electronics
Funds raised so far: $10m
Investors: Flat6Labs, Resonance and various others

Gulf Under 19s final

Dubai College A 50-12 Dubai College B

The specs

Engine: 2-litre 4-cylinder and 3.6-litre 6-cylinder

Power: 220 and 280 horsepower

Torque: 350 and 360Nm

Transmission: eight-speed automatic

Price: from Dh136,521 + VAT and Dh166,464 + VAT 

On sale: now

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
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Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through www.etihadarena.ae and www.ticketmaster.ae.

Sinopharm vaccine explained

The Sinopharm vaccine was created using techniques that have been around for decades. 

“This is an inactivated vaccine. Simply what it means is that the virus is taken, cultured and inactivated," said Dr Nawal Al Kaabi, chair of the UAE's National Covid-19 Clinical Management Committee.

"What is left is a skeleton of the virus so it looks like a virus, but it is not live."

This is then injected into the body.

"The body will recognise it and form antibodies but because it is inactive, we will need more than one dose. The body will not develop immunity with one dose," she said.

"You have to be exposed more than one time to what we call the antigen."

The vaccine should offer protection for at least months, but no one knows how long beyond that.

Dr Al Kaabi said early vaccine volunteers in China were given shots last spring and still have antibodies today.

“Since it is inactivated, it will not last forever," she said.

Duminy's Test career in numbers

Tests 46; Runs 2,103; Best 166; Average 32.85; 100s 6; 50s 8; Wickets 42; Best 4-47