Bodies of 26 Ethiopians found in mass grave in Malawi

Oct 19, 2022, 3:27 PM | Updated: Oct 20, 2022, 3:28 am

BLANTYRE, Malawi (AP) — Officials in Malawi have exhumed the bodies of 26 suspected Ethiopian migrants from a mass grave 255 kilometers (155 miles) north of the capital city, Lilongwe.

Villagers found the bodies in a forest located near the main road that connects Malawi and Tanzania, which is known as a route traffickers use to transport people to South Africa.

The early evidence suggested the men buried in Mtangatanga Forest may have suffocated while traveling in a van, police said. Investigators are looking into the deaths as a potential human trafficking case.

“Arrangements are underway, through the Ministry of Health, to bring a pathologist to do the postmortem so that we have an official version of the cause of death,” Rodney Simwaka, the commissioner of the Mzimba District in the Northern Region of Malawi, said.

Simwaka told The Associated Press he heard Wednesday morning that villagers had found dead bodies near a timber factory.

Evidence collected at the scene indicated the men were Ethiopian nationals between the ages of 25 and 40, Malawi police spokesperson Peter Kalaya said.

In July, police impounded a 30-tonne (33-ton) tanker truck carrying 42 Ethiopians into Malawi along the route from the border with Tanzania..

Authorities said at the time that some of the passengers looked frail and in urgent need of medication and nourishing food.

One of the migrants, the only one who spoke English, told police the group had been in transit for at least four months to get to Malawi.


Follow AP’s coverage of global migration at https://apnews.com/hub/migration

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Image: Scottie Scheffler celebrates after a birdie on the 10th hole during the second round of the ...

Associated Press

No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler: From the course to jail and back after Friday arrest

Top-ranked golfer Scottie Scheffler was arrested after police say he dragged an officer while trying to get around a fatal accident Friday.

19 hours ago

Photo: Seattle Times publisher and CEO Frank Blethen announced he will step down at the end of next...

Associated Press

Seattle Times CEO to step down after 4 decades in charge of family-owned paper

Seattle Times publisher and CEO Frank Blethen announced he will step down at the end of next year after four decades of leading the paper.

2 days ago

Image: Andy Jassy, Amazon president and CEO, attends an event on Aug. 15, 2022, in Culver City, Cal...

Associated Press

Comments from Amazon CEO Andy Jassy about unions violated federal law, NLRB judge rules

A federal judge ruled Amazon CEO Andy Jassy violated labor law by making certain anti-union comments during media interviews two years ago.

15 days ago

Image: Former President Donald Trump appears at Manhattan criminal court before his trial in New Yo...

Associated Press

Judge raises threat of jail as he holds Trump in contempt, fines him at trial

Former President Donald Trump was held in contempt of court at his trial Tuesday and fined $9,000 for repeatedly violating a gag order.

18 days ago

Photo: The seal of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is seen before an FCC meeting to vot...

David Hamilton, The Associated Press

Net neutrality restored as FCC votes to regulate internet providers

The FCC on Thursday voted to restore "net neutrality" rules that prevent broadband internet providers from favoring some sites over others.

23 days ago

southwest airlines...

David Koenig, The Associated Press

Southwest will limit hiring and drop 4 airports, including Bellingham, after loss

Southwest Airlines will limit hiring and stop flying to four airports as it copes with weak financial results and delays in getting new planes from Boeing.

23 days ago

Bodies of 26 Ethiopians found in mass grave in Malawi