Police in South Africa have said five people have been killed and more than 40 arrested after an early-morning hostage situation at a church near Johannesburg.
A statement said police and military personnel who responded to reports of a shooting at the International Pentecostal Holiness Church in Zuurbekom found four people “shot and burned to death in a car” and a security guard shot in another car. Six other people were injured.
Police say they rescued men, women and children who had been held hostage and appeared to have been living at the church. The statement does not say how many were rescued.
Police said more than 30 guns were found and the attack by a group of armed people “may have been motivated by a feud” between church members.
The national police commissioner said the response by security forces “averted what could have been a more severe bloodbath”.
The statement said that among those arrested were members of the police, defence forces and correctional services.