2 Nov 2010

Angolan police rescue 29 children accused of witchcraft

Reuters - July 17, 2009

Angola police say release 29 children from sect

LUANDA (Reuters) - Angolan police rescued 29 children accused of witchcraft from a house that belongs to a religious sect leader who says he has special powers, a police official said on Friday.

The police official in Luanda said the leader of the sect "God is Alive", had been questioned by police but declined to provide further details.

An official at the National Children's Institute in Angola, was cited by state-owned Jornal de Angola's online edition as saying the children, along with 10 women and three men, were found in a house in Angola's northeastern province of Zaire.

Although most Angolans say they are Catholic, belief in witchcraft is widespread in a country recovering from an almost three-decade long civil war and where an estimated two thirds of the population are poor.

Last year police rescued 40 children from two religious sects that accused them of possessing evil powers.

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