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Connect the World

The rescued, accused witches of Nigeria

By Christian Purefoy, CNN
  • Children in Nigeria are getting abused after being accused of being witches
  • Community workers say kids are cast out of their villages, attacked and even killed
  • Rescued children bear the scars of being beaten, attacked with boiling water, and machete cuts
  • State leaders say the problem is being exaggerated and accuse child workers of working a scam
  • Nigeria
  • Child Abuse
  • Religion

Watch more about the extent of Nigeria's child witch scandal on CNN International's Connect The World this week at 2000 GMT

Akwa Ibom state, Nigeria (CNN) -- Some pastors in Southeast Nigeria claim illness and poverty are caused by witches who bring terrible misfortune to those around them.

In the second part CNN's investigation by Christian Purefoy he looks at some of accused children who have found a sanctuary and one of the pastors who carries out the deliverance ceremonies.

Part 2: The church's role in branding kids as witches Video

Those denounced as witches must be cleansed through deliverance or cast out, say the pastors -- many of whom charge between $300 and $2,000 for their services.

In many cases the accused witches are children who can be beaten or even killed if they are not just thrown out of the family home, say community workers.

But there are others pastors who believe education is a more powerful tool against the fear if witchcraft.

Child's Rights & Rehabilitation Network

Stepping Stones Nigeria

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