SARAJEVO, BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA The last animal in the Sarajevo zoo, a brown bear, has died of starvation.
|"We took him some bread, an apple, last Wednesday, but he was too weak to eat them," zoo worker Pal Takac said. "He died the next day. I was sad to see him die after all these months, but at least his suffering is over."
|The bear survived the 7-month siege by eating two others sharing its cage.
The cage, 100 yards from the lines of Serb forces, has been exposed to regular sniper and mortar fire.
"We tried to feed the bear as often as we could," Takac said, "but when the leaves fell from the trees, it was nearly impossible because the snipers could see us easily."
One zookeeper was shot dead by a sniper and another was wounded as he tried to feed the animals.
The carcasses of lions, tigers, leopards and bears clutter cages. Zoo workers say giraffes, eagles and wolves died months ago.
An American animal rights activist recently arrived in the Croatian capital of Zagreb, intent on rescuing the bear. He was forced to abandon his mission when U.N. and government authorities refused to give him the credentials to travel through the Bosnian war zone to Sarajevo.