Tiger found roaming loose on the Doha Expressway
With reporting from Riham Sheble
Footage of a tiger cub wandering through traffic on a Qatar highway has provided an unusual diversion for motorists battling with their commute late this morning.
A 20-second film clip and still photographs showing a confused looking cub on the Doha Expressway have already been widely shared on social media.
The tiger, which has a broken chain attached to its collar and appears to be an escaped pet, can be seen running through lines of stopped vehicles, seemingly trying to find a way off the road.
On Twitter, the Ministry of Interior has said it is following up on reports of the loose tiger.
Translation: We assure everyone that the authorities are following what has been circulating (on social media) regarding a tiger being seen in specific areas of the country.
One of a series of the photographs then shows a man in white thobe and cap holding the tiger’s chain, seemingly having captured it.
Video shared by Al Watan says the same.
Although illegal, is not uncommon for residents to keep wild animals such as tigers, lions and cheetahs as pets in Qatar.
Last March the government appealed for the owners of an escaped cheetah cub, which was found in the Al Sakhama area north of Doha.
Despite repeated warnings of the dangers about this practice from the authorities including the Ministry of Interior, practical enforcement of these regulations is patchy.
The perpetrator could face a maximum of six months in prison and a fine ranging from QR1,000 to QR10,000 under Qatari law.
UPDATE | March 9, 2016:
The Ministry of Interior said late last night that the owner of the cheetah now faces legal proceedings: