Looking back on the deadliest cult disasters

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914 dead, Guyana jungle apocalypse

In one of the most dramatic mass murder-suicides of modern history, 914 adults and children from a US cult died in the jungle of the small South American country of Guyana on November 18, 1978.

They were led to their deaths by charismatic US preacher Jim Jones who coerced members of his Peoples Temple sect into carrying out “revolutionary suicide”. Parents were urged to give their children poison, while others were shot trying to flee or forced to drink the deadly liquid.

Jones, who had moved his followers to Guyana from San Francisco to avoid a crackdown by US authorities, was found dead with a gunshot to the head. It was never determined if he had died by suicide or was shot.

Over 700 dead in Uganda

Another of the world’s worst cult-related massacres took place in southwestern Uganda’s Kanungu district in 2000 where some 700 members from the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God burned to death.

Members of the cult, which believed the world would come to an end at the turn of the millennium, had been locked inside a church, with the doors and windows nailed shut from the outside.

The building was then set alight.

The cult leaders, who were suspected of their deaths, were never found.

Content retrieved from: https://english.ahram.org.eg/News/504939.aspx.

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