Elephant hurls stone at seven-year-old girl, killing her at Morocco zoo

PUBLISHED : Friday, 29 July, 2016, 7:46am
UPDATED : Friday, 29 July, 2016, 9:47pm

A seven-year-old girl died Tuesday from injuries she sustained when an elephant picked up a large stone in its trunk then hurled it out of its enclosure, striking her on the head at Rabat Zoo in Morocco.

Cellphone video taken moments after the incident shows the brick-sized rock that allegedly hit the girl and a group of bystanders huddled near her, tending to her injuries while waiting for an ambulance. The video, uploaded to YouTube, is graphic.

After being taken to the hospital, the unidentified girl died a few hours later, the zoo said.

An official statement released by Rabat Zoo denied responsibility for the young girl’s death, according to Morocco World News, and said that the elephant enclosure met all international standards.

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The zoo offered its condolences to the family of the deceased girl and said that “this kind of incident is rare, unpredictable and strange.” The statement, written in French, added that similar types of incidents have happened recently in the United States, such as in Disney World Orlando and Cincinnati Zoo, a reference to the 2-year-old boy who died after an alligator attack in June and when a 3-year-old boy fell into a gorilla enclosure in May.