Palestinian refugee Saad al-Jamal had long dreamed of owning a pet lion. He has realised his lifetime ambition by acquiring two lion cubs.

He said he bought the two-month-old cubs from the Rafah Zoo. The cubs' parents are believed to have been smuggled into Gaza through a tunnel along the border with Egypt nearly three years ago.

Mr al-Jamal is raising the two cubs at his home in the Al-Shabora refugee camp in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. His family has named the female cub Mona, and the male one Alex.

Mr al-Jamal's grandchildren love playing with the cubs, stroking them and having a kick-about. One can't help thinking it might all end in tears, though.