Several protesters shot dead in Madagascar

Several protesters shot dead in Madagascar

Police say investigation underway following deadly shooting

By Hassan Isilow

JOHANNESBURG (AA) - Police in Madagascar have shot dead over 10 protesters and wounded nearly two dozen others in the south-eastern town of Ikongo, local media reports.

According to online local French language publication, Midimadagasikara, the shooting occurred Monday when an angry mob upset by the kidnapping of a child with albinism stormed a local police station where four suspects were being held. They wanted to lynch them.

The commander of the national gendarmerie, Gen. Andry Rakotondrazaka confirmed at a media briefing late Monday that 11 people died at the scene after police opened fire and 18 others were seriously injured.

Rakotondrazaka said an attempt by police to disperse the large crowd that was stoning the police station and barracks failed, forcing them to open fire.

"To protect the lives of the gendarmes and their families and to preserve their property, the soldiers had to use arms," said Rakotondrazaka, adding that an investigation is underway.

In some African countries people with albinism are hunted and killed for their body parts by superstitious people who believe the parts will give them wealth and power.

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