Africa

Thursday 31 July 2014

At least six killed in eastern Congo prison break

Published 05/06/2014|21:25

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Prisoners killed two guards at a prison in Bukavu
Prisoners killed two guards at a prison in Bukavu

At least six people were killed when hundreds of inmates broke out of a prison in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on Thursday, United Nations-supported radio and a local official said.

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Prisoners killed two guards at a prison in Bukavu, capital of South Kivu province, stealing their weapons, a provincial government official told Reuters, asking not to be named. He said 301 of the prison's 1,500 inmates had escaped, but around 40 had been rearrested.

A Reuters witness heard gunshots in Bukavu following the escape.

Congo's U.N.-backed Radio Okapi reported six deaths in the breakout, of which three were inmates and three police.

Congo's prisons are notoriously overcrowded and mismanaged, and escapes are common. In late 2011, almost 1,000 prisoners escaped a jail in Katanga province following an attack to free a militia leader.

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