Dar es Salaam: Ten children kidnapped in Tanzania have been found dead with their body parts mutilated, an official told CNN.
Deputy Health Minister Faustine Ndugulile said on Monday that the children, some as young as seven, had been missing since December in Njombe district.
Their bodies were discovered last week after police launched a search operation in the area.
"So far, we have found 10 bodies, and most of their private parts and teeth had been removed," Ndugulile told CNN.
"These murders are linked to witchcraft practices because that is the trend for such crimes, where herbalists ask people to get human parts for money rituals," he added.
The Minister told CNN that these killings however, were not linked to the albino ritual murders which are prevalent in Tanzania and other parts of east Africa.
Tanzania has one of the highest rates of albinism in the world, at one in 1,500 people.
Despite its prevalence, there's still a lack of education and tolerance and albinos are regularly killed for their bones and organs, which are sold to witch doctors for "charms and magical potions", according to Amnesty International.