Three rare lions killed in India sanctuary

Poachers killed three highly-endangered Asiatic lions in their only remaining sanctuary in western India, wildlife officials said on Tuesday.
Rangers at the Gir National Park in the state of Gujarat found the mutilated bodies of two lionesses and a cub on Saturday deep within the park, said Bharat Pathak, the park’s conservation officer.

Only some 350 of the Asiatic lions that once roamed across much of Asia from Turkey to India still exist, all of them in the Gir park.
The poachers left the pelts of the lions, taking their claws, bones and skulls — which are highly prized in traditional Chinese medicine — raising fears that a professional gang of poachers was behind the killings, Pathak said.