Fifty seven Malawian children have been rescued in South Africa from child traffickers.
South African authorities arrested three Malawian nationals suspected of trafficking the children, after they stopped a speeding vehicle that they were using.
The children were found in the back of the windowless delivery van.
The youngsters aged between 11 and 21 are believed to be from one of the poorest regions of Malawi. Most of them were boys – 18 were girls – and they are all now in a safe house.
South Africa’s acting police chief Khomotso Phahlane says it is not clear whether the children were being trafficked for labour or sexual exploitation.
According to the police, each child had received a sum of up to $170, with promises of more in the future.
The three Malawians that were accompanying the adults have been charged with trafficking and are now in police custody.