Police in Madagascar reported on Tuesday that when they opened fire on a crowd attempting to attack a police station on Monday in retaliation for suspected criminals, they killed 19 people and injured 21 others.
According to a police statement, the incident occurred near the town of Ikongo, which is located around 330 kilometres (205 miles) southeast of Antananarivo. Security personnel have sent reinforcements to the region to help restore order.
According to the authorities, problems began when a crowd tried to storm into the police station to seize four persons who were being held on suspicion of abducting an albino boy and killing his mother.
The child is nowhere to be found.
Although there was no information available regarding the alleged abduction's motivation, Reuters reports that albino children are occasionally kidnapped in some African nations by individuals who think they can be used for ritual purposes.
According to the police statement, the situation in Ikongo is now calm, and the security forces have offered monetary compensation to the families of those killed in the shooting.