Lilongwe - Following persistent abductions and murders of albinos living in Malawi, the country's police chief has reportedly issued a shoot-to-kill order in the hope of curbing the scourge facing the southeast African nation.
Criminal gangs nicknamed "albino hunters" have embarked on a reign of terror across Malawi, often killing albinos in broad daylight without mercy or remorse, CCTV Africa reported.
According to police, over 50 offences have been committed against albinos since last year, with the number expected to be much higher due to many cases going unreported.
According to statistics released by the police, at least 11 people with albinism have been killed since the beginning of this year, while 34 others have been left with body mutilations due to attacks from gangs.
Also read: Angry mob burns 7 to death in Malawi over human bones
The call to fight back against criminals comes just a day after alleged "witches" were lynched by a Malawian mob following claims that they had been found in possession of human bones.
According to a News24 report, the mob attacked the group due to a belief that they practiced witchcraft and were carrying bones belonging to an albino person.
Believed to possess magical powers, the bones of albinos have become a hot commodity in recent times.
Fetching high prices on the black market, syndicates remain on the hunt for albino body parts in Malawi and many parts of Tanzania.