Three infant children have been beaten to death in a Myanmar village outside Yangon by a man purporting to be a spiritual healer, who told their families they were possessed by evil spirits. The mystic allegedly punched and kicked two toddlers and an eight-month-old baby to death during exorcism rituals on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, according to police and relatives.
Local lieutenant-major Kyaw Naing Soe said the “exorcist” put the villagers into a trance, then killed the children as they watched. “On the night of the 18th, the three-year-old boy was beaten to death and the culprit threw him in the Twante canal,” he told AFP. “On his return, he continued to beat the three young girls and two of them were killed.” The uncle of the dead boy, Tun Naing, said the villagers had lost their senses after the exorcist fed them “blessed” water, then made them stand in a circle as he chanted and cast spells. Only a handful of people attended the dead boy’s funeral on Saturday in Twante, a town south of Myanmar’s main city Yangon. A police report said the bodies of the dead children — a boy, three, a two-year-old girl and the baby — showed evidence of being punched, kicked and stamped on. Police have charged the “exorcist” with murder, grievous bodily harm and hiding a dead body. He is being held in Insein prison near Yangon.
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