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'World's Loneliest Elephant' Makes First Friend In Eight Years At New Home In Cambodia

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'World's Loneliest Elephant' Makes First Friend In Eight Years At New Home In Cambodia

The 'World's Loneliest Elephant' has now arrived safely in Cambodia after being rescued from a dilapidated zoo, having already made a new pal - his first in eight years.

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Kaavan the elephant was rescued from Pakistan and flown over to Cambodia, having arrived in the country on a charter flight on 29 November.

The 36-year-old male is now settling into his brand new home at Cambodia Wildlife Sanctuary in Siem Reap province, where he'll spent the next few days getting to know the other elephants.

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And it looks like it's going well, as footage shows him meeting one of his neighbours - touching trunks with a female elephant.

The sanctuary's elephants haven't met any newbies for six years, while Kaavan had been alone for even longer.

Kaavan in Pakistan earlier this year. Credit: PA
Kaavan in Pakistan earlier this year. Credit: PA

Originally from Sri Lanka, he became the only Asian elephant in Pakistan while living at a zoo in Islamabad for 35 years, where he didn't have any proper care or socialisation.

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After losing his partner in 2012, he was even dubbed the 'World's Loneliest Elephant' - his plight sparking global uproar from animal rights groups, who launched a campaign to save him.

Even singer Cher got involved, eventually meeting Kaavan in Pakistan before he left for his new life in Cambodia.

Awaiting his journey to Cambodia. Credit: PA
Awaiting his journey to Cambodia. Credit: PA

She tweeted: "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 [November]."

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Now Kaavan is enjoying the high life in Cambodia, indulging in refreshing mud baths and playing with new toys in his enclosure.

Kaavan at his new home in Cambodia. Credit: ViralPress
Kaavan at his new home in Cambodia. Credit: ViralPress

When he met Di Poh, another elephant, the two greeted each other by touching the tips of their trunks.

Sharing a photo of the emotional moment, global animal welfare organisation Four Paws tweeted: "First contact in 8 years!

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"We can now officially call him the 'former loneliest elephant in the world'! Seeing Kaavan interacting with other elephants is a huge moment for us but more importantly for Kaavan.

"We are extremely moved!"

A staff member called Pedro said: "All three of our ladies seem a bit intimidated by him, he is a big boy."

Pedro added: "We will give them time to get to know each other, and the girls will let us know if or when they want further interaction."

Featured Image Credit: ViralPress

Topics: News, Cambodia, Elephant, Animals

Jess Hardiman
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