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Mother, 20, accused of being a 'witch' burned alive
From: Dailymail          Published On: February 7, 2013, 14:37 GMT
 
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A young mother was tossed screaming on to a pyre of tyres and burned alive after being accused of killing a neighbour's six-year-old son with sorcery.

Kepari Leniata, 20, 'confessed' after she was dragged from her hut, stripped naked and tortured with white-hot iron rods.

She was then dragged to a local rubbish dump, doused in petrol and, with hands and feet bound, thrown on a fire of burning tyres. As the mother-of-two screamed in agony, more petrol-soaked tyres were thrown on top of her.

The horrendous scene took place in in the village of Paiala, in the highlands of Papua New Guinea where many believe that witchcraft exists and sorcery is used to kill enemies.

The head bishop of a Lutheran Church located in the district today condemned the killing.

‘Sorcery and sorcery-related killings are growing and the government needs to come up with a law to stop such practice,’ David Piso told The National newspaper.

‘Many innocent and helpless people have been killed and tortured after being accused of witchcraft, but taking a life is against the teachings of the Bible and the laws of the country,’ he said.

The tragedy unfolded after Miss Leniata's young neighbour fell sick on Tuesday morning. He complained of pains in the stomach and chest and was taken to Mt Hagen hospital where he died a few hours later.

Relatives of the boy were suspicious that witchcraft was involved in the death and learned that two women had gone into hiding in the jungle.

After they were tracked down, the pair admitted they practiced sorcery but had nothing to do with the boy's death. Miss Leniata, they said, was the person responsible.

The boy's family went to her hut at 7am on Wednesday, stripped her and dragged her away to torture and death.

Police who rushed to the area were turned back by the angry crowd, but were able to drive away with one of the other women while the second has fled.

Papua New Guinean police have launched a murder investigation and are reportedly preparing charges against those responsible.

A firetruck which had been called to the scene was chased away by the crowd.

Authorities and international diplomats have spoken out against the torching of the young mother, leaves behind two children, the youngest an eight-month-old girl.

The country's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has sworn to bring the killers to justice, as he addressed the matter in a statement today.


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