No less than five people have been killed in southern Malawi after they were accused of behaving like vampires.
A night-time curfew has been imposed by the government to prevent vigilante mobs from killing more people, as Malawian President Peter Mutharika vowed to launch an investigation into the killings..
The UN says it has pulled staff out of two districts as the vampire scare swept south of the country.
The people killed were suspected of drinking human blood as part of magic rituals.
The government-imposed curfew restricts movement to ten hours from 07:00 until 17:00 local time (05:00 to 15:00 GMT) .
Meanwhile, the president’s office said in a statement: “This development has been of grave concern to the president and the entire government.”
The UN said in a report that the vampirism rumours appear to have originated from Mozambique, and “speared across” the border to the Malawi districts of Mulanje and Phalombe.
But, it said, it is unclear what sparked them.
As one of the world’s poorest countries, many aid agencies and NGOs work in Malawi.