FIJI PSYCHIATRIST: PATIENTS ABUSED BY WITCH DOCTORS

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Feb. 5) - The head of one of Fiji's major psychiatric hospitals has accused traditional healers of torturing mentally ill Fijians.

Dr Sish Narayan, of the Saint Giles hospital in Suva, says people are being admitted to the hospital having been whipped, with their hair pulled or with chili powder in their eyes.

He says one woman had her scalp ritually removed.

Fiji police say they will investigate the allegations.

Narayan says has seen to five cases a day where family members say that their sick relatives were possessed and want them released from the hospital to be treated by witch doctors.

February 5, 2003

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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