Movie actress Keira Knightley was so appalled by the conditions in poverty-stricken Africa during a recent fundraising visit, she frequently felt like bursting into tears.

The 19-year-old star jumped at the chance to join her Love Actually director Richard Curtis on a five-day visit to Ethiopia, organised by British charity event COMIC RELIEF.

But nothing prepared Knightley her for the terrible scenes of deprivation she witnessed first-hand.

She says, "Confronting conditions in Africa was the most shocking experience of my life. The scenes on the street really shook me.

"I'd seen so many documentaries about Ethiopia that I thought I wouldn't find it all massively shocking. I was very wrong. I was on the edge of tears all the way through the first day.

"Realising that some people in Africa had nothing without searching through a bin or a pile of sewage was horrendous."

07/03/2005 14:23