Friday, October 27, 2006

Two men suspected of murdering a baby after being caught with body parts have been detained in Tanzania

Vicky Ntetema:

The two were caught in the northern region of Shinyanga which is famous for belief in witchcraft and mob killings of elderly people accused of sorcery.

Despite efforts to punish perpetrators, witchcraft-related crimes are on the increase in some cattle-keeping areas in the north, say the authorities.

Police also came across body parts earlier this year in the area.

A few months ago they discovered a woman's body abandoned in the bush without its private parts.

It is believed that they were removed by unknown people for rituals.

Shinyanga Regional Police Commander Sirro Nyakoro told the BBC a 28-year-old was caught red handed on Wednesday trading body parts, including the skull and ribs, to another man who is also under police custody.

Belief in witchcraft is common in Tanzania, where suspected sorcerers, often elderly, can face mob justice.

According to the police, killings are often old women who have red eyes from being too close to cooking smoke.

Although the government condemns these practices very few arrests are made as villagers are often frightened to name the culprits.

Over 100 Tanzanians Killed for Practicing Witchcraft

Tanzanian Women killed as Witches Human sacrifice rooted in fear, driven by greed

Shinyanga killings shock Lowassa

"They Lynch You for Simply Having Red Eyes"

"Tanzania suffers rise of witchcraft hysteria"


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