Taliban Frees Hundreds of Prisoners

Taliban Frees Hundreds of Prisoners

Taliban insurgents have stormed a prison in eastern Afghanistan, releasing hundreds of prisoners.

The well-organized attack began with a suicide car bombing that allowed other rebels to get into the prison, said Mohammad Ali Ahmadi, deputy provincial governor of the eastern Ghazni province.

Afghan officials say there were a total of 436 prisoners in the complex, of which 355 escaped during the attack. The government said 148 of the escapees "were threats to national security."

An Afghan interior ministry statement in Kabul says seven security guards were killed and seven were wounded. It also says that five insurgents were killed.

In a statement emailed to reporters, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the attack, alleging the prison was being run by the Afghan intelligence agency, and saying the inmates, including Taliban fighters, were being severely mistreated. In a second statement, the Taliban claims that senior commanders and fighters of the group are among those freed from the jail in Ghazni province.

Mujahid said that a 10-member team of suicide bombers was sent to free the prisoners and three of them died in the pre-dawn action while the rest returned safely. Up to 400 inmates, he claimed, were freed.

The Taliban has in the past staged major jailbreaks in Afghanistan. In April 2011 the group carried out an audacious attack in southern Kandahar province to free around 500 fighters from Sarposa, the country’s largest prison. The Taliban had for months dug nearly a kilometer long and three-foot wide tunnel to a prison cell in Sarposa, equipping it with electricity and air pipes from a nearby house.

In an earlier attack on the same prison, a group of Taliban fighters armed with assault rifles and rocket propelled grenades had managed to free as many as 1200 inmates in June 2008.
Taliban Frees Hundreds of Prisoners Taliban Frees Hundreds of Prisoners Reviewed by Ajit Kumar on 2:20 PM Rating: 5

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