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Image of Jesus up a tree draws crowds of praying worshippers despite coronavirus lockdown in Colombia

CROWDS of worshippers have broken a coronavirus quarantine in Colombia to see what they claim is the image of Jesus in a tree. 

The image was spotted on a ceiba tree, whose outstretched branches resembled a crucifix, in the northern town of Magangue on Sunday.

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On the trunk of the tree was a shape resembling the face of Jesus, and the position of the branches meant the figure appeared to be being crucified.

Pictures showed crowds of people queueing up to get a closer look and take photos of the shape.

Rafael Rodriguez, a journalist with El Tiempo, said: "Dozens of people are gathered here.

"They are here to see the figure of what they say or believe is the figure of Christ, they have forgotten about coronavirus and are currently here looking at this figure".

Colombia currently has over 1,700 cases of the coronavirus and at least 50 people known to have died.

Curfews are currently in place across the country, and its land and sea borders have been closed.

Instead of heeding the restrictions, many of those queuing to see the tree intended to pray to the figure for the epidemic to pass.

Local shopkeeper Agustina Diaz said: “It can clearly be seen.

"Everybody is praying and asking for Earth to be cured of this evil and for Magangue to be protected”.

Authorities are reportedly concerned about the tree becoming a pilgrimage site.

Rodolfo Zambrano, also a journalist, said: “The figure appeared last Sunday night and people rushed there with candles and transformed the place into a pilgrimage site, which is concerning neighbours as a lot of people are going there.”

Reports say the mayor of Magangue, Carlos Cabrales, earlier attended the scene with police to tell people to return home.

The local bishop has not commented on the case.

The coronavirus has infected more than 1.4 million people around the world and killed at least 81,000 since breaking out in December.

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