Elephant kills young girl in Vietnam

Hanoi (dpa) – A circus elephant killed an 11-year-old girl in northern Vietnam as a group of children teased the animal, a police official said Monday.
The incident occurred Sunday when the girl and other children sneaked into a courtyard where the elephant was tethered between shows, a police official from Lao Cai City, Phan Van Quang, said.
The girl tried to feed the pachyderm as the other children aggravated it, Quang said.
The animal began acting aggressively, lifted the girl up and threw her to the ground, trampling her repeatedly, he said. She died at the scene.
The animal was part of a troupe belonging to the Vietnam Circus Association that was performing for 10 days in the city. It had to cancel its final show.
Pham Van Xuyen, the association’s deputy chairman, said the elephant was normally gentle and the incident was the first time it had hurt someone.
He said the elephant was being taken back to Hanoi and placed under watch 24 hours a day. It would continue to perform, Xuyen said.
Police were investigating the incident, Quang said.
Author: Pham Bac