Russian officials say investigators looking in to militant groups in Tatarstan discovered 57 people living in an underground bunker when they raided a mosque in Kazan last week. The people are believed to be members of an Islamist sect led by 83-year-old self-proclaimed prophet Fayzrahman Satarov.
Authorities have described the bunker as an 8-level labyrinth with no natural light, no heat and no ventilation. Sect members had been living in the compound for more than a decade. At least 19 children, many of who have never seen the light of day, were rescued and taken to shelters for medical exams. They all appeared to be well fed and in relatively good health.
"Upon receipt from the building, the children were in satisfactory condition," health worker Tatiana Moroz told CNN. "The children were all fed, although they were dirty. Upon receiving them, we washed them. They have undergone a full examination -- all the Russian specialists have examined them, and taken all the analyses."
It remains unclear if any of the children will be returned to the care of their parents. Satarov and several sect members were taken into custody and could face charges.
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