NEUNKIRCHEN, West Germany — East German leader Erich Honecker gave an aging, lonely lion in West Germany something to roar about when he sent his hometown zoo in Saarland state a young lioness.
"Prince (the lion) roared when he saw her. He's an old guy and is thrilled to have got such a young lady," zoo director Helmut Reichling told reporters Wednesday.
Honecker will visit his birthplace in Neunkirchen today for the first time since 1948. He is the first leader of the East German Communist Party to visit West Germany. The lioness was sent to West Germany by train Monday.
The lioness is an Indian lion, a much rarer breed than her African lion companion. There are only about 300 Indian lions left in the world, and about 100 of them live in zoos, Reichling said.