Malawi: Eight dead in stadium stampede in Lilongwe
Seven children are said to be among those killed after a crush at a football match held to celebrate the nation's 53 years of independence.
Eight people have been killed in a stadium stampede in Malawi before a football match held to mark the 53rd anniversary of the country's independence.
Seven children among those to have died
According to the Malawian state news service, which quoted sources at the African nation's ministry of health, seven of those to have lost their lives are children.
"Doctors have confirmed that eight have died and another 62 people have been injured," said police spokesman James Kadadzera in the wake of the tragedy, which took place on Thursday in the capital of Lilongwe.
The crush occurred as fans were making their way into the 40,000-capacity Bingu National Stadium to watch a friendly between Nyasa Big Bullets and Silver Strikers.
Initial reports said the game was to go ahead as planned despite the deaths.
Malawi's president, Peter Mutharika, has sent his condolences, and is expected to visit injured victims at Lilongwe's Kamuzu Central Hospital.
Achieved independence from British rule in 1964
The country, which is located in southern Africa, gained independence from British colonial rule on 6 July 1964, with Thursday's match one of a series of events organised to celebrate the anniversary.