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Eleven killed following church stampede

It's claimed thousands of worshippers rushed to leave a service at a stadium in the town of Kwekwe, which had been led by controversial Pentecostal preacher, Walter Magaya.

His healing ministry has a huge following, however his methods have attracted criticism.

According to AFP, police said around 15,000 people were packed into the stadium 175 miles southwest of Harare, on Thursday evening for an event organised by Mr Magaya, who claims to perform miracles.

Provincial police spokesman Shadreck Mubaiwa said when the service ended worshippers rushed to the only exit and four people died during the crush.

Seven others were declared dead on arrival in hospital.

"Because of the pressure, some people fell resulting in the deaths and injuries," Mubaiwa said.

Speaking on a local radio station Thursday night, Magaya said he was "gutted" by the incident.

"I rushed back to the venue and it was very sad, the saddest moment of my life," he said.

"This was our event and as a church we have to take the blame for the tragedy. It is still too early to say what caused the stampede but the fact that the stampede took place at the venue means that part of our system failed to function."

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