Cher has helped transport the “world’s loneliest elephant” to a new home.
The 74-year-old singer has travelled to Pakistan to help celebrate the decision to move an elephant named Kaavan from his home in Marghazar Zoo in Islamabad to a new, improved location in Cambodia, following years of lobbying by animal rights groups and activists, including Cher's Free the Wild charity.
Kaavan is known as the “world’s loneliest elephant” because he lost his partner in 2012, and activists have been campaigning to have the animal moved after concerns were raised about the conditions of his home.
The elephant has lived at the zoo for 35 years, and was diagnosed by veterinarians as both overweight and malnourished, and also suffers behavioural issues due to his isolation. He was brought there as a gift from Sri Lanka at one-year-old.
Cher’s visit to Pakistan to see Kaavan was not made public due to concerns over security, but she took to Twitter on Friday (Nov 27) after meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan to discuss the elephant’s removal.
She wrote: “Just Came From Meeting To Thank Prime Minister Imran Kahn For Making It Possible For Me To Take Kaavan To Cambodia. Kaavan Will Be Able To Leave For Cambodia On The 29. Think Documentary Will Be Heartwarming (sic)”
Just Came From Meeting To Thank Prime Minister Imran Kahn For Making It Possible For— Cher (@cher) November 27, 2020
Me To Take Kaavan To Cambodia. Kaavan Will Be Able To Leave For Cambodia On The 29. Think Documentary Will Be Heartwarming🙏🏻.
🐘Kaavan's journey to freedom from captivity in Islamabad to Cambodia will be a 2021 @SmithsonianChan documentary ❤️ Help us build Kaavan's forever home 🏡 https://t.co/dzdl4Ew4gn 🙏🏻@ftwglobal #KaavansJourney pic.twitter.com/iTxdzfndNB— Cher (@cher) November 27, 2020
Kaavan's journey from captivity to her new home will be the subject of a Smithsonian documentary slated to premiere next year.
Cher was first made aware of Kaavan's plight in 2016. She then hired a legal team to press for the elephant's freedom. When the court order freeing him was announced in May, the singer called it one of the "greatest moments" of her life.
Kaavan, who weighs about 4,500kg , will be moved to a dedicated elephant sanctuary in Cambodia next week, thanks to the animal rescue team at Four Paws, including veterinarian Dr. Amil Khalil, who has been overseeing Kaavan’s medical treatment.
And the vet praised Cher for her humanitarian efforts, as he believes celebrities using their platform to promote worthy causes is “crucial”.
He said in a statement: “Celebrities lending their voices to good causes are always welcomed, as they help starting public discourse and raising pressure on responsible authorities.
“Around the globe there are animal lovers, famous and not famous, and the support of every single one of them is crucial.”— BANG
Photo: TPG News/Click Photos