40 skeletons found under Tanzanian baobab tree

January 17, 2009 12:00 am

, DAR ES SALAAM, Jan 17 – Police in the northern Tanzanian region of Shinyanga have unearthed the remains of 40 people buried under a baobab tree, an official said Saturday.

"We have preserved the bones for scientific investigations to establish the age and possibly the nature of the deaths," Shaibu Ibrahim, the police commander for Shinyanga region, told AFP by telephone.

"But the bones appear to be very very old," Ibrahim said, adding that the human remains were discovered in Mayangi village on Tuesday.

"Police dug out the area and collected what seemed to be bones of human beings that were buried under a baobab," he said.

Ibrahim said he could not rule out crime connected with the killings of elderly women and albinos in a region where witch doctors use their limbs and organs to make lucky charms.

The region is also rich with large and small-scale diamond mines, where accidents are relatively frequent and often go unreported.


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